Sports betting bill advances in Kentucky legislature

Sports betting bill advances in Kentucky legislature
(WFIE file)

FRANKFORT, Ky. (AP) - Kentucky lawmakers have taken the first step to legalize sports betting.

A legislative committee approved House Bill 175 on Wednesday. The bill would make it legal to bet on sports in Kentucky. It would also make internet poker and fantasy sports gambling legal.

Bill sponsor Republican Rep. Adam Koenig said the bill could bring in as much as $20 million a year in new taxes. The proposal would require some of that money to go to regulating the new industry and helping people with gambling addiction. But the rest would go to the state's struggling public pension systems.

Family Foundation Executive Director Kent Ostrander said his group opposes the bill because the new money would come at the expense of Kentucky families.

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