State lottery deal, still unsigned, sparks clashes between Dems, governor
By Brad Bumsted
Published: Thursday, Jan. 17, 2013, 12:01 a.m.
HARRISBURG — Democratic lawmakers and Republican Gov. Tom Corbett clashed on Wednesday over the governor's plan to privatize management of the state lottery.
Corbett has yet to sign the contract he awarded last week to Britain-based Camelot Global Services, but Department of Revenue officials hinted Corbett would do so before the end of the week. The contract then would go to Democratic Attorney General Kathleen Kane, who has 30 days to review it for “form and legality.” Corbett will speak about the lottery plan Thursday in Hershey.
House Democrats at a news conference on Wednesday blasted Corbett's lottery plan, which they claim was crafted secretly and is a bad deal for Pennsylvania senior citizens, who benefit from lottery programs.
The Corbett administration issued a news release in response saying the House Democratic Caucus is promoting “mistruths” in an effort to scuttle the contract.
“Our goal is to increase funding for senior programs so that we can ensure, as Pennsylvania's population grows, we will be able to keep up with that need,” Corbett said. “Camelot's bid commits to record-level profit growth for the Pennsylvania lottery, translating to billions of dollars for seniors.”
Rep. Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, called the deal a “boondoggle” that he predicts one day would result in the state's trying to buy its way out of the contract.
Rep. Tony DeLuca, D-Penn Hills, derided the “secrecy” of the deal — details of which were not available until a Senate hearing on Monday.
They criticized the 5 percent profit margin Camelot would get, and several Democrats said the adage, “If it ain't broke, don't fix it,” applies to the lottery.
“It's my understanding they'll have keno in every tavern,” DeLuca said.
The Legislature needs to approve any expansion of gambling, the Democrats contend.
Corbett said the state had extensive meetings and phone calls with legislative staffers, two public hearings and maintained a website with information about the Camelot bid.
The plan would boost lottery revenue by allowing keno — fast-paced lottery-type numbers drawings — on terminals in taverns and clubs.
Camelot would guarantee the state $34 billion over 20 years. Company officials say they would put $200 million upfront, which the state can dip into any year if Camelot fails to meet projections.
Brad Bumsted is state Capitol reporter for the Tribune-Review.He can be reached at 717-787-1405 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com 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.
- Military veteran ID cards granted on honor system
- Robert Morris University Polling Institute poll finds value of college in doubt
- UMass latest to deal with rowdy St. Paddy’s parties
- Gettysburg wax museum selling historical figures
- Oscar-winning director Demme’s ‘Outsider’ art collection set for sale
- Lawmaker: Responders should carry drug that counteracts opiates
- Bill would let local police use radar guns
- Allegheny College journalism conference to share story next door
- Doylestown church embraces Zimbabwe couple
- PennDOT to pay team of companies for bridge repairs under single contract
- Feds say Pa. prisons misuse solitary confinement