The state of Kentucky has seen a bill that outlaws skill gambling machines signed into law by state governor Andy Beshear.
The law, which was formerly known as House Bill 594, recently passed through the state's Senate with a 29-6 margin. The machines are often found in bars and stores throughout the Bluegrass State and were previously unregulated. Now, those machines will be illegal. There has been concern among small business owners that run the bars and shops hosting the machines that pulling them will reduce vital revenues.
Beshear said that he empathized with those business owners, and that he hoped lawmakers in the state make moves to expand gambling offerings moving forward. News of the law comes a week after the state's House passed a sportbsetting bill through to the Senate, which itself just passed the bill through the Licensing and Occupations Committee.
Regarding the new bill, Beshear said, "I think it's time we had full-blown casinos in Kentucky, but it's an industry that absolutely has to be regulated and it needs to be legal. Gray machines are entirely unregulated, and I don't believe they are legal.
"They came into Kentucky and just set up and were taking dollars from Kentuckians and taking them out of state; with zero regulation, zero taxation, and zero help for those who may develop any issues from using them.
"The law is the law. I hope in the future, whether it's additional Kentucky Lottery offerings or others, we can do some things to replace some of that revenue and give people options if they want to use their entertainment dollars in this way, but also benefit the commonwealth and that small business owner."