For Immediate Release: March 18, 2003
Senate Committee Approves Bill For Public Vote On Education Lottery
A senate committee has given the nod to a statewide vote on Governor Brad Henry's education lottery proposal.
House Bill 1278 passed in the Senate Finance Committee by an 8-5 vote Tuesday morning. The measure was approved by the House of Representatives last week.
Senator Angela Monson presented the measure to the Senate Finance Committee. She explained if the public approved the proposal, it would include numerous safeguards to ensure the integrity of the education lottery.
"I think one thing we've got to stress is that the education lottery money is earmarked for education and those funds cannot be used to replace existing education funds. This proposal would ensure real additional dollars for public education," explained Senator Monson, D-Oklahoma City.
Senator Monson said the measure also included another key provision to ensure the education lottery did not have any unintended effects.
"One concern that has been raised is that having an education lottery would open the door for other types of Class III tribal gaming in our state.
"We're confident that would not be the case but we have included a provision that would end the lottery then and there if the courts ruled otherwise," noted Monson.
Senate President Pro Tempore Cal Hobson is the Senate author of the measure.
"I'm especially pleased with the bi-partisan support the bill received in committee," said Hobson, D-Lexington.
In the Senate Finance Committee proceedings, six Democrats and two Republicans voted in favor of the measure that now heads to the full Senate for a vote.
"We're confident we will have the same kind of support from members of both parties when the measure is heard on the floor," Hobson said.
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