Issue Number 5 – Lottery Proponents are Being Disingenuous to the Public When They Say All Funds Will go to Education

North Carolina Citizens for a Sound Economy today released Issue Number 5 of its ongoing effort to educate elected officials and citizens on why a government-run lottery is bad business and public policy.

Other uses for lottery revenue is not mentioned to the public.

Lottery proponents want us to believe that all lottery revenue will go solely to education programs, but this is disingenuous at best. The language of the 1999 Lottery for Education Act does not match this rhetoric. Under this legislation the following guidelines were established for the spending of lottery revenue: 25 percent for “Education Improvement Scholarship Fund,” 25 percent for public education technology needs; another 25 percent to be used by counties to pay for water and sewer infrastructure improvement; and the final quarter to go for reducing the state’s bond debt. These provisions clearly illustrate that bringing a lottery into North Carolina just gives proponents of bigger government another chance to hoodwink the public and another source to fund the already bloated government.

History shows that North Carolina policymakers have serious spending problems. Bringing in the lottery just to satisfy their bad spending habits is not wise public fiscal planning and does little to help our children’s education.

“Giving the state the ability to spend more money is inviting trouble,” said North Carolina CSE Director Jonathan Hill. “A lottery will only make it easier for government to get a bigger and not do anything to help children who need a quality education.”