The Faces of 90.5 WESA
Government & Politics
Thu January 17, 2013
Lottery Privatization Deal Finalized by Corbett
Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett's administration has finalized a contract to allow British lottery operator Camelot Global Services to run the Pennsylvania Lottery for the next 20 years. A spokesman for the state attorney general's office said the contract paperwork arrived Wednesday night. Attorney General Kathleen Kane's office has 30 days to review it.
The administration said Thursday, “This partnership will maximize Lottery profit to ensure secure, predictable funding for programs benefiting a dramatically growing senior population.” Some lawmakers, including a long list of Democrats, disagree and say they will sue to stop the deal.
The contract calls for Camelot to give the state a minimum of $34.6 billion over the life of the deal. Corbett said that is better than had been projected under the current operations. Profits from the lottery benefit programs aimed at helping seniors.
“This is about providing for and protecting seniors, and nothing else,” said Corbett. “Today in Pennsylvania there are nearly 2.7 million individuals age 60 and older, and that number will grow to 3.6 million by 2030. We have the fourth largest population of older adults in the country, and with that comes significant and costly obligations.”
Corbett said the deal means an injection of $50 million in the current budget year. The governor would like to see those funds used “for home and community-based services so that older adults may continue to live in their homes.”
The administration breaks down the $50 million as follows:
· $21 million for the Aging Waiver: The Aging Waiver Program provides in-homes service to 28,000 seniors over age 60 who are clinically and financially vulnerable.
· $20 million for the OPTIONS Program: OPTIONS provides care management, home-delivered meals, protective services and in-home services for individuals age 60 and older. Additional increases in revenue would help decrease the waiting list of 5,400 older adults who are waiting for home support and personal care services to keep them in their homes.
· $5 million for Increased Investment in Area Agencies on Aging (AAAs): Pennsylvania’s 52 AAAs cover all 67 counties and serve as the front door for the Department of Aging services at the local level. The AAAs serve 600,000 people.
· $2 million for Senior Center Modernization: This investment will help senior centers prepare for the changing demographics and make them attractive to a younger, aging population.
With the deal Pennsylvania becomes the third state behind Illinois and Indiana to hire a private lottery manager. The deal can be renegotiated in the 10th year and it can be extended to 30 years if Camelot reaches certain performance benchmarks.
Camelot says it hopes to expand the lottery’s offerings to include Keno and other retail options.
The state expects to retain about 70 current lottery employees and Camelot has said that it intends to “retain and hire under its management all current employees who are committed to working toward increased sales and profits.”