Ahead of Tuesday’s meeting of the Kentucky Horse Racing Commission, Chairman Jonathan Rabinowitz shared a prepared statement regarding process regulating sports betting in Kentucky ahead of its late-2023 launch.
Here is that full statement, omitting a list of government officials Rabinowitz thanked toward the end.
Full transcript of KHRC sports betting statement
“For the past two months, members of the KHRC staff, KHRC commissioners and members of the PPC (Public Protection Cabinet) have been meeting with regulators from other states, industry experts, service providers and licensed associations with the goal of drafting clear and concise administrative regulations to govern sports wagering in Kentucky. Meeting with state regulators in Massachusetts, Indiana, New Jersey, Ohio and Colorado have provided valuable insight into best practices.
“Many of these regulators have recently rolled out sports wagering in their states and provided tips learned from real world experience. Meetings with service providers in business with multiple sportsbook sites provided a look at the extensive technologies employed to protect the integrity of wagers. There have been discussions with stakeholders about problem gambling programs in Ohio to inform the program being developed in Kentucky at the guidance of health and family services. Our legal counsel has met with counsel from sports associations such as Major League Baseball to learn about emerging legal issues in wagering. We have contracted with Gaming Labs International to provide consulting service and training for our staff.
“Earlier this month, we announced the KHRC staff is growing with 14 new positions in sports wagering. These positions include leadership roles, as well as investigative, analytical and administrative positions. We are pleased to update that we have some good candidates in the hiring process and hope to make some additional staff announcements soon.
“All of this groundwork was in preparation for drafting the administrative regulations that will govern sports wagering. And we can report progress there too. Initial drafts have been shared with our licensed associations and industry stakeholders, and will be available for public review at KHRC.ky.gov in the next few weeks. To keep this progress moving, a tentative special meeting of this committee is planned for early July to review and approve these regulations.
“We will continue to provide updates on the progress as available. But needless to say, this is an exciting time for the Commonwealth.”
No launch timeline update
Those interested in Kentucky sports betting updates may have been disappointed that only a prepared statement was shared Tuesday. The topic buzzing most among would-be sports bettors and the gambling industry is a potential KY launch timeline.
Raboniwitz shared no details about that.
The timing of the meeting where regulators will review and approve regulations, though, in “early July” as Rabinowitz said, is telling. Regulations regarding the application process must be approved before Kentucky commissioners can begin accepting applications for sports betting licenses. If those specific regulations get approved at the early July meeting, apps like Caesars Kentucky and Bet365 Kentucky can begin the application process.
Then, depending on how quickly the KHRC can review those applications, an NFL launch doesn’t seem impossible.
But it would certainly feel rushed.