Across the United States, a variety of interested parties are voicing their opinion of online gambling. From legislators to operators and interest groups, there are those who are in favor of the option while there are also those who are opposed. Senator Lindsey Graham is currently trying to pass legislation that would ban online gambling on a federal level, which would greatly affect the current online gambling industry in the US. Included in the categories for banned games is the Lottery, which has at least one state upset and fighting back.
The Georgia Lottery recently announced their opposition of the potential federal online gambling ban. The group has been quietly working to voice their position as a proponent of online gaming. The state of Georgia was one of the first to begin offering lottery gaming in online form two years ago. Since launching online lottery ticket sales, the state has been able to place more than $6 million to the education fund and other state interest areas. If the ban is implemented, lottery officials fear that the funds generated by the lottery would be impacted greatly.
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Online, the Head of the lottery, Debbie Dlugolenski Alford, stated back in April in a letter to the U.S. House Attorney, the proposal would end an online distribution channel that is critical to the state’s lottery success and the ability to grow revenues to benefit education programs. Alford also stated that the innovative and effective methods of increasing revenues are essential to continuing to pay for education efforts in the state, this would of course, include online gaming options.
Because the lottery program provides HOPE scholarships in the thousands as well as tens of thousands in pre-K assistance, the lottery could lose funds of $39 million that help to fund these programs. Just like the online gambling sites of New Jersey, Delaware and Nevada, Georgia would be affected greatly by a federal ban of online gambling. Because of the negative outcome, the state lottery now becomes another ally in the fight to continue to see the US offer online gambling options.
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