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Lightford: Lottery dollars should serve as a supplement to education

LotterySPRINGFIELD — When the Illinois Lottery was established, its purpose was to provide extra revenue for schools, but those funds have been often used to replace funds from other sources. Reliance on lottery revenue to fund local schools could soon come to an end under a proposal that was approved in the Senate today.

House Bill 213, led by Assistant Majority Leader Kimberly A. Lightford (D-Maywood), ensures that any money transferred to the Common School Fund from the State Lottery Fund shall serve as a supplement, not a replacement for, any other money due to the Common School Fund.

“It is time we used lottery money as it was intended,” Lightford said. “Our school system is underfunded, and we cannot continue to allow our children to lose out on vital resources they need for success.”

Currently, 24 percent of lottery ticket revenue is deposited into the Common School Fund. In fiscal year 15, that amount was $679 million of the total $2.85 billion in lottery sales.

The measure will now head back to the House on concurrence.

Sen. Lightford

lightford-2014-150

4th District
Assistant Majority Leader

Years served:
1998 - Present (Senate) 

Committee assignments: Assignments; Executive; Education (Vice-Chairperson); Committee of the Whole; Executive Appointments; Energy and Public Utilities; Labor.

Biography: Full-time senator; B.A. in communications, Western Illinois University; M.A. in public administration, University of Illinois Springfield; village of Maywood trustee; employee for Secretary of State, Department of Corrections and Central Management Services; longtime champion in the Senate for education, working families and women's issues; lives in Maywood with her son, Isaiah.

Associated Representative(s): Emanuel Chris Welch, La Shawn K. Ford