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Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Lottery scales back 2015 budget by $3 million net

Posted By on Wed, Aug 20, 2014 at 2:04 PM

The legislature's delay — and likely future termination — of an Arkansas Lottery plan to begin quick-draw video games akin to keno has forced a reduction in the lottery's budget for the fiscal year ending June 30, 2015.

Following director Bishop Woosley's recommendation, the Lottery Commission approved a revised budget that anticipates about $78 million for net scholarship revenue for the year, down from $81 million. Gross revenue was reduced from about $429 million to $416 million.

The legislature could authorize video games by the lottery at the regular legislative session, but the opposition that forced the lottery to pull back from a plan to have the games underway by September suggests that could be hard struggle. The lottery began in 2009 and its net for scholarships has been as high as $100 milllion in a year. Scholarship amounts have been cut as the net has decreased. The value of the scholarship has dropped from $5,000 a year to $2,000 for four-year-college enrollees.

Here's the revised budget, which will be reviewed by a legislative oversight committee iater (not tomorrow as originally written).

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