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Attorney General Rejects Corbett's Lottery Privatization Plan

State Sen. Tim Solobay and others lauded the decision Thursday.

Pennsylvania Attorney General Kathleen Kane has rejected the Corbett Administration’s plan to privatize the management of the Pennsylvania Lottery to a U.K.-based company Camelot Global Services—and Senate Democrats lauded the plan.

"All along we have been opposed to all of this privatization. That's no surprise, Sen. Tim Solobay, D-Canonsburg, said.

He noted that lottery has always turned a profit, and wondered why—instead of allowing another country to manage it "I always thought, 'Why can't we turn around and get a consultant? Why can't our own people do it?"

And that wasn't all that concerned him about the plan.

"I was concerned about folks' jobs. Here's a guy (Gov. Tom Corbett) who's trying to create jobs yet is trying to privatize two of our biggest assets."

Sen. Jay Costa, D-Allegheny County, also called Kane's decision the right one.

“The Attorney General made a proper decision,” Costa said.  “Pennsylvania seniors all Pennsylvania residents can rest easy now that the Attorney General took this action and put a stop to the expansion of gaming without proper authorization.”

“The entire plan was flawed.” Costa said.  “It is clear that there are ways for current employees of the Lottery to be given the latitude to implement changes that will produce better results and even more money being generated.”

At a news conference Thursday in Harrisburg, Kane said that she could not approve the deal negotiated between the Corbett Administration and Camelot. 

She cited several reasons for her denial including that the arrangement infringed on the legislative powers of the General Assembly, that the plan was an illegal expansion of gaming without proper authorization and that the plan involved a waiver of sovereign immunity.

Costa said that he especially appreciated the fact that Kane removed politics from the decision, focused on the legal issues involved in the contract and made the right call on behalf of Pennsylvania’s seniors.

Roger February 14, 2013 at 07:21 PM
Quoting: "Costa said that he especially appreciated the fact that Kane removed politics from the decision, ..." This is indeed a revealing statement. It implies that he believes the role of the Attorney General is to render political decisions, but appreciates the deviation on this case. Costa stepped right in the hole on this one. All the other statements regarding the political perspective are rubbish and can be discarded. The auction was open to all bidders, and two US companies were into the auction initially, bowing out part way through the process. There was plenty of opportunity for a US company to be involved in the final bidding. All the talk about "other country" and "jobs at home" is only political rhetoric and can be dismissed as such. I am not surprised at the decision, and is undoubtedly the right one. What is more puzzling than her decision is why did the Corbett Administration believe they were outside the boundaries she spells out? Why wouldn't the Administration have gone to great lengths to insure they were authorized to make the decision? Why wouldn't the Administration be positive being on firm footing to expand gambling? Any why would they have granted sovereign immunity? These points make no sense on legal grounds. What were they thinking? Is their legal team so shallow as to have missed these basic points (or seem to be basic)?
James Barth February 16, 2013 at 02:34 AM
Perhaps Governor Corbett considers himself to be outside, or, above, the law. He has shown a genial facade of contempt towards citizens rights, and health, in relation to shale gas extraction regulation, and, enforcement, the Sandusky molestation case, and perhaps the Commonwealth run lottery. He is a fish out of water, when it comes to logic, and, common sense. Is he related to Santorum?

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