The Pennsylvania Lottery is one of the most successful and well-managed state
lotteries in the nation.
Last year, the PA Lottery had annual sales in excess of $3.2 billion and, according to House Democrats, has held administrative costs to record lows of just over 2 percent.
According to DailyFinance.com, Pennsylvania State Lottery has steered $20.6 billion to a variety of causes since it began, but its profits have primarily been funneled into an elderly benefits fund. This fund includes subsidies for transportation, tax rebates and Medicare. As of last year, about 61 percent of the annual ticket sales go to prizes, 30 percent goes to the state and the rest is for expenses. That's a higher percentage of prize return than most other states, according to DailyFinance.
But Gov. Tom Corbett plans to outsource the management of the PA Lottery to a privately owned corporation based in the United Kingdom, the Roxborough-Manayunk Patch reports.
According to a letter some Democratic state House representatives wrote to Gov. Tom Corbett this week: "Even the Camelot Group, the United Kingdom-based company slated to enter into the PMA (private management agreement), has admitted that the Lottery is profitable and well run. So our question for you is, 'Why are you trying so hard to privatize a successful government program and, in the process, hand over millions in administrative fees to a third party manager?'”
Among other concerns addressed in the letter signed by local state Reps. Tony DeLuca, Adam Ravenstahl, William Kortz, Dom Costa and others:
- The plan is moving forward without authorization from the General Assembly.
- The length of the proposed PMA will lock the Commonwealth into this agreement for 20 years.
- There is only one company still interested in entering into a PMA to run the Lottery, down from the original three interested parties, leaving the Commonwealth with a single bid by a non-U.S. company, without anything to compare against their offer.
- The proposed PMA will enable a foreign company to take over a state government program that employs hundreds of Pennsylvania citizens.
What do you think? Vote in this week's Patch Poll.