State Lottery Could Help Pay for More Security Proceeds from One Day's Sales Might Fund Increased Costs since Sept. 11, Lawmakers Say
Patterson, John, Daily Herald (Arlington Heights, IL)
Byline: John Patterson Daily Herald State Government Writer
SPRINGFIELD - With the state's economy sagging and anti- terrorism costs likely to add millions to the budget, Illinois lawmakers are contemplating a special edition of the state lottery to help pay the bills.
Illinois Senate President James "Pate" Philip, a Wood Dale Republican, broke word of the possibility Wednesday while talking to reporters.
"We're having it researched. That might be an idea. We wouldn't have to raise taxes," Philip said of using the lottery. "We could help those people who have been out there on the firing line."
Envisioned is a special day for lottery sales, with all the profits going to help pay off the costs of added security around the state.
Exactly how much the added Illinois State Police patrols and other security measures will cost Illinois taxpayers has not been compiled and depends on how much the federal government covers, said Dennis Culloton, spokesman for Gov. George Ryan.
However, lawmakers assume there will be a request for additional money coming at some point. Philip said the lottery idea came from Sen. Kirk Dillard, a Hinsdale Republican. Dillard was not in Springfield on Wednesday and could not be reached for comment.
Philip said he thought similar special lottery days had been used before, but Illinois State Lottery officials were unaware of any such instances.
On average, the lottery generates about $1.4 million a day for the state. Sales and profits can vary greatly depending on jackpot sizes, said lottery spokesman Max Montgomery.
The lottery began in 1974, and initially all profits went to the state's general revenue fund, which pays for myriad programs. In 1985, lawmakers voted to send all lottery profits to the state's school fund. …