The lottery bill that passed the Alabama Senate on Friday does not match the intent of senators who approved it, the sponsor of the bill said today.

The apparent discrepancies are important, including how money raised by the lottery would be spent.

Sen. Jim McClendon, R-Springville, said there were problems with the bill after it was adjusted to reflect the nine amendments that senators approved on Friday before they voted to pass the bill 21-12.

McClendon initially said the legislative staff made some mistakes in compiling the amendments.

However, Senate Secretary Pat Harris said no mistakes were made, and the amendments were inserted correctly.

McClendon said it was Harris' job to know that, so he did not dispute it.

The bill is now in the House, where it can be changed again. If the House does make any changes, the bill would have to return to the Senate for another vote.

The bill, Gov. Robert Bentley's lottery proposal, originally designated all lottery proceeds, after prizes and expenses are paid, to the state General Fund.

On Friday, senators approved an amendment to designate 10 percent of proceeds to education.

Senators later approved another amendment designating the first $100 million of proceeds to the Alabama Medicaid Agency. That amendment deleted some other references to how the proceeds would be used.

The bill sent to the House shows the $100 million designation for Medicaid but not the 10 percent for education, which was first reported by the Montgomery Advertiser.

Another section of the legislation, outlining the seven-member commission that would be appointed to run the lottery, appears twice in the bill, although it is not repeated exactly.

Harris said the Senate staff cannot try to interpret senators' intent in submitting amendments. He said they can fix minor mistakes like a misspelled word, but otherwise accept amendments as written.

He said it's not unusual for senators to want to change a bill after it goes to the House.

"If they see it as a problem, there is a fix," Harris said. "Adopt a substitute in the House and send it back up here."

The House Economic Development and Tourism Committee is scheduled to consider the bill on Tuesday.

Rep. Alan Harper, R-Northport, the committee chairman and the House sponsor of Bentley's lottery bill, could not immediately be reached for comment.

If the committee approves the bill on Tuesday, it could be considered by the House on Wednesday.

That's the last day to pass the bill in order to get it on the ballot for voters in the Nov. 8 general election.

If it passes later than Wednesday, it would require a special election.

http://www.al.com/news/index.ssf/2016/08/alabama_lottery_bill_has_probl.html




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