ShareThis Page

No need to privatize lottery

| Saturday, Feb. 9, 2013, 9:00 p.m.

While the Corbett administration works to finalize a contract to put our 41-year-old Pennsylvania Lottery under the managerial control of a private British firm, disturbing revelations have emerged.

While Camelot Global Services officials recently traveled from England to testify at hearings in Harrisburg about how the lottery would thrive under their leadership, problems surfaced back home.

The Camelot brass proclaimed they could reach new sales heights for our lottery, yet they recently raised ticket prices in England. They offered assurances that nearly all 230 Pennsylvania Lottery workers would likely be offered jobs. But in the U.K., the company is laying off 80 staff people and closing regional centers.

Here's the topper: Camelot raised prices and cut staff, but handed out millions in bonuses to senior executives.

None of these troubling business practices were disclosed in Harrisburg.

The Corbett administration consummated the Camelot deal behind closed doors with no public disclosure or legislative authorization, ignoring other states that privatized with disastrous results.

The Pennsylvania Lottery is one of the best-operated lotteries in the nation and sales increase yearly. It has raised more than $27.6 billion for senior citizens' programs.

With this record, I fail to understand why Corbett is bent on saddling our lottery with foreign management for decades to come.

And the more we find out about this firm's problems and business practices, the more uneasy we should be with this privatization scheme.

Richard Kasunic


The writer, a Democrat, is a state senator representing Fayette and Somerset counties.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.