Lottery Commission Does Fuzzy Math on Machine Costs

The Arkansas Lottery Commission is back to doing fuzzy math.

Last week, we told you about Lottery Spokesman Julie Baldridge’s statement that the 100 lottery vending machines they purchased cost $50,000 each.  But yesterday, Arkansas Lottery Director Ernie Passailaigue told the Legislative Oversight Committee the machines only cost $16,500 each.

The sudden change in the machines’ price tag was news to me—and, from what I could tell, to some of the legislators on the committee as well.  When they pressed Mr. Passailaigue about the change in price, Passailaigue said that Baldridge’s statement on the radio was “misinformation”.

Well, I broke down the cost of the vending machines, and I think Julie Baldridge was probably being much more honest and accurate than Passailaigue gave her credit for.


Senator Tells Citizen to Take His Shirt Off

Anyone who thinks politics is dry and boring needs to come to more committee meetings at the Arkansas Capitol Building.

After yesterday, the idea that some elected officials won’t be content until they have “the shirt off your back,” has a whole new meaning—all thanks to Senator Terry Smith of Hot Springs.

Senator Smith is on the Legislative Oversight Committee for the Arkansas Lottery, and made quite a scene at yesterday’s meeting when he actually demanded that a young man who came to testify before the committee remove his shirt.