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While it seems many, including this editorial board, are divided on the issue of expanded gaming in Kentucky, legislators say their constituents want to vote on the issue.
So does Gov. Steve Beshear, who plans to release his expanded gaming proposal this month.
Before voters go to the polls, we’d hope they would do their research, weighing the pros and the cons of any candidate or issue. We’d hope that would also be the case if the issue of expanded gaming comes to a public vote.
But, there’s a chance that may be impossible.
State Sen. R.J. Palmer II, D-Winchester, is working on a bill about the issue, but the details are still unknown. In the meantime, about half a dozen bills have been filed in the House that either address gaming directly or indirectly. Even the governor is mum about what exactly his proposal is.
State Rep. John “Bam” Carney, R-Campbellsville tells us that some are pushing for a simple yes or no vote on whether to allow expanded gaming. If the measure gets the approval of Kentucky voters, the state will work out the details later.
Frankly, that scares us. How could anyone who takes their voting duty seriously vote blindly on an issue?
Expanded gaming could mean casinos at racetracks, expanding lottery options or even allowing poker machines at retail stores. It could even mean a casino/racetrack in your backyard.
Because a constitutional amendment requires three-fifths approval from both the Senate and the House, others believe such an amendment would not pass. Considering the fact that many lawmakers are upset over redistricting, the possibility of the measure getting very far in either chamber seems even more unlikely.
Still, we urge you to contact Carney and State Sen. Jimmy Higdon and share with them your views on the issue. And stress that if the issue does come before voters, we’d like to know exactly what it is we are voting on.
Contact Carney at (502) 564-8100 Ext. 708 or at home at 465-5400. Contact Higdon at (502) 564-8100 Ext. 623 or at home at (270) 692-6945.