Alabama Senators could vote on new lottery bill this week

Published: Apr. 6, 2021 at 9:14 AM CDT
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HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - Happening today, Gov. Kay Ivey plans to meet with the Legislature to determine the next steps on a possible new lottery bill. Last month, a proposal that seemed to be on its way to passing was sunk by just two votes.

After that vote, lawmakers came up with a new plan they think can pass.

One of the sticking points of that last bill was the idea to create casinos. No one could agree where they should go. So, the new bill ditches the casinos and just focuses on a lottery.

The bill’s sponsor, Jim McClendon, says he believes that’s what the voters of Alabama really want.

In previous years, lottery bills have died over disagreements on where the money should go.

The 2021 bill divides the revenue from a lottery between the education and general fund budgets, without earmarks.

“Gov. Ivey is actively having conversations with the Legislature and others to determine our next steps,” says Ivey spokeswoman Gina Maiola.

“It is clear that the people of Alabama want the opportunity to vote on the issue of gaming one way or the other, and Gov. Ivey has committed to them that she is ready to dig her heels in and work with the Legislature to get that accomplished.”

Any gambling proposal would have to be approved by three-fifths of lawmakers and a majority of state voters. Lawmakers say they believe voters are now more welcoming to the idea.

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