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Texas House Votes Twice on Extending the State Lottery

A statewide scare for public education took place Tuesday afternoon when the Texas House voted against reauthorizing the lottery commission. The lottery provides $2 billion dollars in school funding. After lunch, the House returned and voted to continue the lottery commission. Among those in the first vote to end the lottery were Kyle Kacal of rural College Station, John Raney of Bryan, and Lois Kolkhorst of Brenham. All three switched in the second vote, approving a 12 year extension of the lottery commission.

When asked to comment, Kacal sent this e-mail: “When initially voting on HB 2197, I felt like it was an appropriate opportunity to vote my concerns with a state operated gambling system.  However, after the motion to reconsider and weighing the impact of the $2.2 billion dollars that would create a significant gap in our state’s budget, remove a portion of education funding, and would greatly impact the countless charities and nonprofits, I reversed my vote.”

Second vote by the Texas House which approved extending the Lottery Commission.

Second vote by the Texas House which approved extending the Lottery Commission.

Update 4:20 p.m.:

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) _ Texas House reauthorizes Lottery Commission, reversing previous defeat.

We will post details of the second vote when it is available from Austin. 

Original story:

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) _ The Texas House has delivered a surprising defeat to a bill reauthorizing the Texas Lottery Commission _ casting doubt on the entire lottery statewide.

What was supposed to be a routine bill sparked lengthy and impassioned debate Tuesday, with several lawmakers saying the lottery was as a de-facto tax on poor people.

The House then voted 82-64 to defeat the measure.

Houston Democratic Rep. Sylvester Turner asked if the vote would effectively kill the Texas lottery. The reply from the speaker’s desk came: “If the commission goes down, then the lottery goes down. It would affect the budget.”

Turner pointed out that the state budget currently being considered by the Legislature relies on $2.2 billion for public education from the lottery.

Turner said: “Those dollars are gone at this moment.”

Below is Tuesday’s FIRST vote:

Among those voting against continuing the Lottery were John Raney of Bryan, Kyle Kacal of rural College Station, and Lois Kolkhorst of Brenham.

The first House vote which defeated extending the Lottery Commission.

The first House vote which defeated extending the Lottery Commission.

Short URL: http://wtaw.com/?p=60993

Posted by on Apr 23 2013. Filed under Featured Stories, News.


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