Myths and certainties about the lottery

September 26, 2017

By Chandler Walker
Alabama Political Reporter

The following article is part of APR’s on-going series on gaming and the lottery:

Lotteries have been staples in certain states’ economies since the early 1960s, when gambling became a more legalized practice. The sale of lottery tickets has been able to provide ample revenue across the country, which is normally divided between general state funds and education, with education being one of the more popular departments to receive funds. Lotteries have been able to take the place of increased taxation while allowing the general population to partake in contributing to the government with a recreational approach.

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Breaking down the lottery process

September 19, 2017

By Susan Britt
Alabama Political Reporter

The following article is part of APR’s on-going series on gaming and the lottery:

Polling on both sides of the political aisle indicates that the voters in Alabama support the right to vote on a lottery and legalized gaming — and overwhelmingly support a lottery and legalized gaming. By participating in lotteries across state lines in Georgia, Tennessee and Florida, Alabamians have paid millions of dollars to educate the children of those states. While some questioned the continued viability of state lotteries, several recent large jackpots and the continued popularity of scratch-off tickets demonstrate that lotteries are still sources of significant revenue for lottery states. The lottery debate in Alabama has been historically broken down in the Legislature over four issues:

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Legal lottery, gaming in Alabama isn’t progress, it’s common sense

August 30, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Gov. Kay Ivey wants to allow Alabama citizens to vote on a lottery.

Her office said so this week to APR Editor in Chief, Bill Britt.

This is what passes for progress in Alabama. A Governor allowing voters to decide on a potential revenue source that could drastically alter the way this State does business.

Why we’re still discussing this topic, I have no idea. Alabama is broke. Alabama loves to gamble. Alabama already has legal gambling.

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Ivey: Bye, Bentley task forces

July 13, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Now the gambling committee is officially dead.

Governor Kay Ivey, on Wednesday, signed an Executive Order ending the work of 18 Bentley-era committees, councils, and task forces, including, as APR reported on Tuesday, the Alabama Advisory Council on Gaming.

Also on the chopping block was the Grocery Tax Task Force, which aimed to remove the 4-percent Alabama sales tax on food, and the Alabama Human Resources Task Force, which was set up to find better ways for DHR to deliver services and monitor for child abuse.
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Please don’t waste time on gambling legislation

February 7, 2017

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

On Tuesday, February 7, 2017, the Alabama Legislature will return to Montgomery for the 2017 Legislative Session and will face dire funding issues for prisons, for the long-troubled Alabama Medicaid Agency, for mental health, for infrastructure, for State parks, and other General Fund programs. Polling shows that Alabamians are dead set against raising taxes. Republicans hold a commanding super majority. Most of those legislators will not face a credible threat next year from the troubled Alabama Democratic Party. The only credible threat is on their right in a GOP Primary, and Republican voters don’t want higher taxes. The temptation is to look to gambling for revenue. That would be a mistake.
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Alabama’s gambling fight, Part III: Confusion in the courts

February 3, 2017

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

Standing just outside of his lobbying office in Birmingham, former Gov. Bob Riley is shaking his head at my question, and smiling as if to indicate what I’m asking is possibly the craziest thing in the world.

Except, what I’m asking isn’t the craziest thing in the world. What I’m asking is something that has been told to me by three different people – respectable, knowledgeable people who have no clear reason to lie to me – and something that many other people believe or strongly suspect.
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Alabama Supreme Court denies Greenetrack

December 24, 2016

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Friday, December 23, 2016, the Alabama Supreme Court ruled unanimously that electronic bingo is illegal within the State of Alabama.

In the case State of Alabama v. 825 Electronic Gambling Devices, et al., Greenetrack, the Alabama Supreme Court ruled in favor of the State, reversing a lower court judgment siding with the casino. As a result, the State of Alabama is allowed to destroy the electronic bingo machines it seized from Greenetrack.
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Greenetrack supporters, on his office steps, demand a meeting with attorney general

November 22, 2016

By Chip Brownlee
Alabama Political Reporter

MONTGOMERY—Standing on the attorney general’s office steps Tuesday afternoon, Southern Christian Leadership Conference officials and other GreeneTrack Casino supporters demanded a meeting with Attorney General Luther Strange to discuss their pending Alabama Supreme Court Case and the future of gaming in Greene County.

The Eutaw, Alabama, gaming center filed a brief before the Alabama Supreme Court last month in an appeal over the facility’s electronic bingo machines. Greenetrack argues the Attorney General is asking the Supreme Court to overstep its boundaries.

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What is the Status of Gaming in Alabama?

October 21, 2016

By Josh Moon
Alabama Political Reporter

A couple of weeks ago, to the surprise of many, Governor Robert Bentley announced at a press conference the formation of a gambling committee to explore the benefits and costs of legalizing some forms of gaming in Alabama.

While the move was met mostly with indifference from the majority of the State – a government committee doesn’t exactly inspire great excitement – it also seemed like a curious move from a Governor, who, along with Attorney General Luther Strange, had two weeks earlier signed off on a letter to district attorneys and sheriffs around the State, reminding them that electronic bingo is illegal in Alabama.
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Lottery Killed in Senate

August 29, 2016

By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter

Early on Friday, August 26, a jubilant Governor Robert Bentley (R) said, “We came out with a victory from the House, not us, but a victory for the people of this state.” That Bentley and Bentley’s staff have absolutely no idea what is happening in in the Alabama legislature, could not be any more obvious than at that moment.

While the Governor was taking his victory lap after midnight with the exhausted capital press corps, Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh (R-Anniston) and lottery bill sponsor, Senator Jim McClendon (R-Springville), were desperately trying to find a plan to save the lottery.
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