KY Compact Bill Closer to Becoming Law

The only thing standing in the way of passage of legislation that would allow Kentucky to join an interstate racing compact is reconciliation of bills in the House of Representatives and Senate.

The House passed the bill Feb. 28 by a vote of 80-15. The Senate approved its version of the measure Feb. 9 by a vote of 37-0.

If there is agreement and Democratic Gov. Steve Beshear signs the bill into law, Kentucky would be the first major state to join what is called the National Racing Compact. Six states must pass laws to join before the compact can take effect.

The overall purpose of the compact is to make it easier for the horse racing industry to adopt regulations of interest to all jurisdictions. Each jurisdiction would retain the right not to adopt various rules, however.

The committee substitute passed by the House adds provisions for the Administration Regulations and Review Subcommittee to review any regulations that may be adopted by the national compact. The panel would then have the option to report its findings to the compact.

The House version was sent to the Senate March 1. Only a handful of days remain in this year’s Kentucky General Assembly session.

Should the racing compact bill pass, it will be on the only racing-related legislation to do so. Once again no action was taken on any measures that would address the immediate problems faced by Kentucky’s racing and breeding industry.

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