Alabama Lawmakers Mulling Lottery Option

Jul 23, 2016

Alabama lawmakers are currently being polled about support for lottery legislation as Governor Robert Bentley contemplates calling a special session on Medicaid funding.

Senate President Pro Tem Del Marsh says legislative leaders are gauging interest from state legislators. Marsh says the discussions come as Bentley contemplates calling a special session that could include a lottery bill.

Earlier this week, Gov. Bentley released a statement saying he would make an announcement soon as to whether he would call a special session on Medicaid funding. He and state Medicaid commissioner Stephanie Azar say the state's Medicaid system lacks $85 million in needed funding.

Republican Sen. Jim McClendon of Springville says he is currently working on a lottery bill that he plans to introduce the next time lawmakers are in session.

Alabama is one of only six states without a state lottery. In 1999, Alabama voters rejected then-Gov. Don Siegelman's proposed lottery to fund college scholarships and other education programs.