State House Sound Bites

Capitol reporter Mary Wilson covers Pennsylvania politics and issues at the Pennsylvania state capitol.

Corbett feeling lucky about lottery privatization

Written by Mary Wilson, Capitol Bureau Chief | Jan 6, 2014 12:57 PM
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Photo by Mary Wilson / witf


The Corbett administration let a private firm's bid to manage the Pennsylvania Lottery expire at the end of December, but that doesn't mean the governor feels down on his luck about privatizing the enterprise eventually.

State senators last month began considering legislation that would allow the governor's plans to advance. A measure under discussion would pave the way for an expansion of lottery games and outsourcing the lottery's management to a private company.

There has been no vote on the measure, but Gov. Corbett said he thinks support is growing for the idea.

"Nothing's public - there's more discussion," said Corbett. "And I think there's more look at getting more funds into Pennsylvania."

The big lure of privatization for the administration has been that a private company could promise certain revenue growth year after year. Last year, the lottery's revenue grew by less than one percent.

Sen. Dominic Pileggi, Republican Senate Majority Leader said last month the issue would likely be taken up again early this year. His spokesman, Erik Arneson, said that's still the plan.

"The hearing will most likely take place this month or next," Arneson wrote in an e-mail, "after which we'll develop a plan on how we'd like to proceed -- in consultation with the House and the Governor, of course."

Corbett said his administration is "still focused on the long-term sustainability of the lottery on behalf of the citizens, the senior citizens, of Pennsylvania, and bringing greater stability and a better source of stability than just the fluctuations of people going out and buying the tickets."

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