Bethlehem state Rep. Steve Samuelson joined with other members of the House Democratic Caucus Wednesday to criticize Gov. Tom Corbett’s plan to privatize the Pennsylvania Lottery, saying there are many unanswered questions.
“Governor Corbett is trying to take hundreds of millions of dollars away from the senior citizens of Pennsylvania to give it to consultants from Chicago and a private company from London,” said Samuelson, D-135, who is minority chairman of the House Aging and Older Adult Services Committee.
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The Lottery helps fund a host of state programs for older Pennsylvanians including property tax and rent rebates, PACE and PACENET prescription drug assistance and free and reduced-fare public transportation.
Next week, Samuelson’s committee plans to hold hearings on the privatization plan and its impact on these services.
Samuelson accused Corbett of using the Lottery Fund like an ATM, taking $100 million out of it last year to balance the Department of Public Welfare budget.
“The Lottery Fund was created for the benefit of the senior citizens of Pennsylvania,” he said. “That trust has existed for more than 40 years and Governor Corbett is breaking that trust.”