Senator Skindell Calls For Timeout On Privatizing Lottery
News Report Raises Questions That Demand Closer Scrutiny
Columbus - 
Senator Michael J. Skindell (D-Lakewood) today called for removing a provision from the state budget that would privatize the Ohio Lottery by June 1, 2012. Senator Skindell will submit an amendment this week to strip the Lottery privatization proposal from the Senate's version of the budget. "I have concerns about the timing and the manner by which this proposal was inserted in the budget," said Senator Skindell, the ranking Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee. "Members of the General Assembly have not had sufficient time to determine if this is a good idea or simply a sweetheart deal for private companies that want to take over management of the Lottery." The Cleveland Plain Dealer reported today that language included in the Senate's version of the budget is nearly identical to legislation drafted by a company that hopes to take over day-to-day management of the Lottery. In addition, the Chairman of the Ohio Lottery Commission told the Plain Dealer he was not consulted about the proposed legislation. "Any discussion about privatizing the Lottery should have full transparency and much greater scrutiny than this proposal has received so far," said Senator Skindell. Senator Skindell also pointed out that the most recent state audit praised the Lottery's operations. Last year Lt. Governor Mary Taylor, in her previous role as State Auditor, determined the Ohio Lottery "performed well" and its management practices were consistent with other U.S. Lotteries.
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