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Attorney General Kane says Lottery deal violates state constitution

02.26.13

MARCH 2013, LEHIGH VALLEY Edition of The Union News

Attorney General Kane says Lottery deal violates state constitution

BY PAUL TUCKER
THEUNIONNEWSABE@AOL.COM

REGION, February 15th- Pennsylvania Democratic Attorney General Kathleen Kane on February 14th rejected a contract awarded by Republican anti-union Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett that was to let a British company manage the Pennsylvania Lottery System.

The Corbett Administration awarded the British lottery company, Camelot Global Services, a 20-year contract to privately manage the Pennsylvania Lottery System before the Pennsylvania Senate Finance Committee hearing was even held on the privitization plan. Mr. Corbett awarded the contract to Camelot Global Services on January 11th, three days before the public hearing was to be held by the Senate Committee.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) Union represent 170 of the 230 state workers employed by the lottery system.

The office of the governor released a summary of his intension and the terms and conditions of the Private Management Agreement (PMA) which includes the suggestion that privitizing the system would “provide more reliable and predictable revenue to ensure the continued strength and viability” of the Pennsylvania Lottery system.

The Corbett Administration released a summary in 2012 of his intent of privitizing the lottery system, which had $3.5 billion in sales last year, stating the PMA will be a contract between the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania and a private industry expect structured to assure funding to support lottery-funded senior citizen programs, the summary stated.

However, what Mr. Corbett’s summary did not state is why he found it neccessary to privitize the state lottery system which makes millions of dollars for the Commonwealth each year that supplies funds for many programs for the elderly.

The lone bidder for the PMA was Camelot Global Services of Great Britain, however apparently two other companies pulled out for unknown reasons.

Camelot Global Services has guaranteed him they will double lottery profits over 20 years. These are profit thresholds that must be achieved by the manager in order for the manager to earn any incentive compensation.

Mr. Corbett is attempting to sell the Pennsylvania Lottery System without any checks and balances or involvement with the Pennsylvania General Assembly.

Mrs. Kane stated the Camelot deal violated the state constition and other parts are not authorized by state law, including the expansion of gambling that the agreement would permit. Under the contract Camelot would be allowed the expansion of gambling with the inclusion of keno and online games. Her power as Attorney General halted the completion of the deal because of the office to review the legality of state contracts.

Mr. Corbett has since been granted a extension by Camelot Global Services until February 23rd to respond to Mrs. Kane decision and gives him time to seek implementation of the deal.

AFSCME District Council 13 in Harrisburg, praised Mrs. Kane decision.

David Fillman, Executive Director of AFSCME Council 13 questions why the Corbett adminstration wanted to fix something that was not broken for a so-called guarantee from a foreign-run company.