Lexington, KY. (Friday, March 31, 2023) – The Kentucky Equine Education Project (KEEP) released this statement following the passage of HB 551:
KEEP commends the Kentucky Legislature for passing HB 551, which will legalize sports wagering in Kentucky.
KEEP and Kentucky’s horse industry have been actively involved for the past several years in advocating for sports wagering legislation that protects the role of Kentucky’s signature industry in the landscape of wagering options and provides new revenue for the state.
HB 551 accomplishes this by allowing for sports wagering to be offered in-person at Kentucky’s racetracks. Additionally, sports wagering will be governed by the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, a testament to the trust that wagerers place in Kentucky’s horse industry.
Overall, this bill will benefit Kentucky’s horse industry and community by offering new revenue sources for the industry, as well as attracting new fans to the sport through the in-person experiences at Kentucky racetracks.
The legalization of sports wagering in Kentucky is a result of the hard work and dedication of lawmakers, industry leaders, and advocates who have been fighting for this change for years. KEEP has been a vocal supporter of this legislation, and we are proud to have played a role in making it a reality.
KEEP would like to thank the members of the Kentucky Legislature for their leadership and vision in passing this important legislation. We look forward to continuing to work with them and other stakeholders to ensure that Kentucky remains the horse racing capital of the world.
The Kentucky Equine Education Project, Kentucky’s equine economic advocate, is a not-for-profit grassroots organization created in 2004 to preserve, promote and protect Kentucky’s signature multi-breed horse industry. KEEP is committed to ensuring Kentucky remains the horse capital of the world, including educating Kentuckians and elected officials of the importance of the horse industry to the state. KEEP was the driving force in the establishment of the Kentucky Breeders Incentive Fund, which has paid out more than $177 million to Kentucky breeders since its inception in 2006, and pari-mutuel wagering on historical horse racing, which has been responsible for more than $40 million to purses and more than $24 million to the Kentucky Thoroughbred Development Fund.
KEEP works to strengthen the horse economy in Kentucky through our statewide network of citizen advocates. To learn more about how you can become a member or support our work, please visit www.horseswork.com.