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Betting.net / Kentucky Plans For Legal Sports Betting By NFL Season Kick-off

Kentucky Plans For Legal Sports Betting By NFL Season Kick-off

Publish Date: June 23, 2023
Fact checked by: Alyx Tzamantanis

There are signs that legal sports betting will become a reality in Kentucky as soon as September. The state regulators are currently in the midst of a bid to create a launch of legal KY sports betting in time for the 2023 NFL season.

KENTUCKY PLANS FOR LEGAL SPORTS BETTING

The Bluegrass State became the 37th state to give the green light to legal sports betting on March 31 this year. This saw governor Andy Beshear signing the HB 551 bill into law after it was passed through the state Senate on a 25-12 vote.

Now the matter of making this law into a workable reality has fallen to the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission. The commission met earlier this week and promised to deliver an update on how it would implement its regulations at some point in early July.

These regulations are currently being engineered in a way that ensures that people in Kentucky can legally bet on sport on September 7, 2023 – the same date that the new NFL season kicks off.

The rush to regulate sports betting in KY

The law governing sports betting in Kentucky will come into play as early as June 28, and the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission has half a year to fully implement legal betting on sport. This means that December 28, 2023 will be the cut-off point for the Commission to bring legal sports betting up to speed.

This process features a range of tasks such as meeting with the various stakeholders as well as drafting clear rules that dictate how sportsbooks are allowed to operate. In a bid to do this, the Commission has already met with the regulators who govern sports betting in Indiana, as well as similar agencies in Colorado, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Ohio.

In the coming months, the regulators will also hold meetings with potential sportsbooks, and the legal team will coordinate activities with leading pro sporting organisations within the state. Interestingly, the Commission has already hired Gaming Labs International for consultation services.

When sports betting goes live, it will allow sports fans in the Bluegrass State to bet on everything from professional leagues like the NFL and NBA through to college-level sports. This is good news for fans of the state’s two hugely popular college basketball teams – the University of Louisville and the University of Kentucky

While there will be no provision for legally betting on high school sports, online poker or daily fantasy sports, the Kentucky betting bill contains an interesting quirk in that anyone older than 18 who is within KY state lines will be able to bet on sport.

Which sportsbooks will come to Kentucky?

There could be as many as 27 online sportsbooks operating within the Bluegrass State. The legislators have given licenses to nine of the prestigious horse racing tracks in Kentucky, and this also allows for up to three online skins for each track.

As a result, sports fans in Kentucky will be able to legally bet on sports in-person at any of these licensed sportsbooks, and they will be able to do the same on the licensed sports betting websites and mobile apps.

In order to gain licensing, operators are expected to pay a tax of 9.75% for hosting in-person sports betting, while the rate rises to 14.25% for online sportsbooks. So while Kentucky has had to watch in envy of Tennessee sports betting and other neighboring states, it looks like legal sports betting might be coming to the Bluegrass State sooner than many had anticipated.

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