More Senior Citizens, Stagnant Lottery Revenue

Could Equal Big Trouble for Aging Programs

By Rep. Seth Grove (R-Dover)

 

Thanks to the proceeds from the Pennsylvania Lottery, the Commonwealth is able to offer very generous benefit programs to senior citizens at little cost to taxpayers, which has contributed to Pennsylvania’s status as the No. 4 choice in the nation for senior citizens to reside.  Unfortunately, our programs for a growing senior citizen population have been put in jeopardy by stagnant returns from the lottery, and it is clear that something must be done to safeguard the benefits on which older Pennsylvanians rely.

 

The Pennsylvania Lottery provides more than $1 billion annually for pharmaceutical assistance, area agencies on aging, senior centers, in-home services, shared- and free-ride programs, the Property Tax/Rent Rebate program and long-term living services.  As our senior population increases, we also must see growth in the lottery fund to fully cover all eligible participants.

 

In eight of 20 years, the lottery has seen negative profit growth.  According to a bipartisan report by the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee, the lottery fund eventually will be unable to meet its obligations.  If we do not find innovative ways to boost lottery revenue, the Commonwealth could be forced to either cut programs for senior citizens or raise taxes to support them.  We need to find a way to head off these scenarios.

 

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Testimony of Brian Duke, Secretary of Aging Senate Finance Committee: Lottery Private Management Agreement - January 14, 2013

A Private Management Agreement for the Pennsylvania Lottery - January 14, 2013

Senate Finance Committee Testimony Dan Meuser, Secretary of Revenue - January 14, 2013

Testimony of Peter Tartline, Executive Deputy Secretary - Governor's Budget Office Senate Finance Committee: Lottery Private Management Agreement - January 14, 2013

Review of AFSCME's Lottery Counterproposal - January 14, 2013  

A Report About Pennsylvania Lottery Funding of Programs and Services for Older Pennsylvanians

General Assembly - Lottery PMA Presentation

Governor's Letter On Lottery Plan