|Which of these two just won the lottery?|
The Pennsylvania Lottery was first established in 1971. It funds older Pennsylvanians with the Property Tax/Rent Rebate Program, free and reduced-fare transit; low-cost prescription drug programs known as PACE and PACENET, long-term living services as well as 53 area agencies on aging and senior centers throughout the state. But Governor Corbett has stated that privatization will give him another $50 million for these programs.
Freeman is unswayed.
"There is no need to privatize the lottery," Freeman said. "The Pennsylvania Lottery is the most successful state lottery in the nation. With profits of $1 billion, that funding goes directly to programs for senior citizens. It has increased profits substantially in the last few years and has proven to be a well-maintained program.
"The expansion that Camelot, the private management firm, promises to develop is something that can be handled in-house. We don't need to divert funding from programs for Pennsylvania seniors to hire a private management firm to tell us how to run the operation. Instead of wasting millions of dollars on consultants, let's make sure that money goes to benefit senior citizens directly.
"Beyond these concerns, there are others, such as the limited legislative oversight and the many unanswered questions that still remain with the governor's contract. This week's Senate committee meeting was lacking in answers. I hope these items can be addressed when the House Aging and Older Adult Services Committee explores the privatization plan next week," Freeman said.
Inky columnist John Baer has questioned why Governor Corbett would want to fix something that isn't broken.