Feb 23 2007
01:09 pm

Stacey X has introduced legislation that would prohibit anyone receiving public assistance of any kind from collecting lottery prizes (PDF format). Do lottery prizes include scholarships?

Number9's picture

Doesn't stand a chance...

From the Bill:

No Families First, food stamp, WIC, TennCare or other such recipient who receives state or federal economic or medical assistance due to indigency shall be entitled to collect a lottery prize.

Breathtakingly unconstitutional.

CE Petro's picture


This doesn't stand a would be an absolute nightmare. Lottery retailers would have to ask if each and every person that win's $1+ if they are on public assistance. I imagine lottery retailers will shoot this down pretty fast.

DHS already requires notification of winnings of $600 or more. And the lottery requires ID to collect winnings of $600 or more. Draw your own conclusions.

Tamara Shepherd's picture

Applicable in California

Actually, California enacted their state lottery sometime during the years I lived there (summer 1981 to summer 1987), and this *was* their state law. They also forbade any incarcerated persons from winning. I distinctly remember, because California's first *two* jackpot winners were unable to collect!

Dunno if their law was ever struck down...

CE Petro's picture

How Was This Enforced?

Tamara, I can understand enforcing the collectability of large prizes, but when the large portion of prizes are under $100, how does that become enforcable?

Tamara Shepherd's picture


Since I never once played California's (or Tennessee's) lottery, I really don't know, Petro. I agree that it sounds awfully bothersome to retail clerks. Randy, maybe California's law and Campfield's bill both apply just to these jackpot prizes?

But unconstitutional? Isn't it comparable to food stamp recipients being unable to purchase beer and cigarettes (with their food stamps) at the grocery store?

FYI, the same year TN enacted the lottery, I was tracking a companion bill that would have made one semester of Personal Financial Management mandatory in our high schools. It failed. *There* was the Big Gov legislation I could have supported...

LadyVols's picture

food stamp, WIC, TennCare or

food stamp, WIC, TennCare or other such recipient"

These are the people who play it and the ones who IT takes the most money from. All the studies show the POOR are robbed by this thing and the rich get the "school" money.

talidapali's picture


seems to me Stacey X sure likes to screw poor people over coming and going...

Maybe he should just say it out loud..."Well, if they have no bread, then let them eat cake..."

"You can't fix stupid..." ~ Ron White"

"I never said I wasn't a brat..." ~ Talidapali

Up Goose Creek's picture


My first reaction is to support any bill that would discourage poor folks from throwing away money on the lottery. But I see where this is ridiculous. Besides, the welfare recipient would sell their ticket to a middleman. Add that to the fees from predatory businesses and it becomes even harder to climb out of poverty.

I agree with Tamara that personal financial management should be mandatory in our schools.

Less is the new More - Karrie Jacobs

R. Neal's picture

I agree with Tamara that

I agree with Tamara that personal financial management should be mandatory in our schools.

Yeah. Where's that bill?

Tamara Shepherd's picture

Fin mgmt bill

That was back in '02, Randy. Dunno if anything comparable has been introduced since. Might be that the process would need to be started all over again.

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