AR Lottery Scholarships Continue to Languish: April Report

Yesterday the Arkansas Lottery released its financial report for the month of April.

The reports show the Arkansas Lottery took in more than $42 million, but paid out less than $7.2 million in scholarship funding. That’s about 17% of the Lottery’s total revenue for the month.

Since last July the Arkansas Lottery has grossed nearly $422.4 million, but only 16 – 17 cents of every dollar it made has been budgeted for students. The rest is being spent on salaries, prizes, contract fees, advertising, and other expenses.

Right now it appears the Arkansas Lottery is on track to pay $85 – $90 million for scholarships this year. That’s $10 – $15 million shy of the amount lottery proponents told us students would receive every year back in 2008.

Below is a breakdown of lottery revenue and scholarship spending so far this fiscal year.

Month Gross Lottery Revenue Paid to Scholarships % Gross Revenue
July $36,885,396.81 $6,661,762.99 18.1%
August 49,320,459.23 8,912,741.54 18.1%
September 36,405,731.14 6,755,333.93 18.6%
October 39,802,740.53 5,667,305.74 14.2%
November 36,186,107.78 6,691,228.00 18.5%
December 44,716,219.32 6,583,355.77 14.7%
January, 2018 44,063,056.11 8,230,861.00 18.7%
February 39,389,927.57 5,947,647.50 15.1%
March 53,523,320.61 7,945,570.02 14.8%
April 42,064,194.78 7,192,997.10 17.1%
Total $422,357,153.88 $70,588,803.59 16.7%

A.G. Rejects Two Recreational Marijuana Proposals

Last Friday Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge’s office rejected two proposals to legalize recreational marijuana in Arkansas.

The first proposal would let anyone 21 or older grow and use marijuana for medical or recreational purposes.

The A.G.’s offices noted a number of typos and errors in the measure, and ultimately rejected the proposal, saying the ballot title was “wholly inadequate” for a constitutional amendment.

The second proposal would let anyone 18 or older grow, sell, and use marijuana for any reason.

The A.G. rejected that measure as well, saying it was virtually identical to past marijuana proposals her office had rejected.

Attorney General Rutledge rejected at least 17 similar measures last year, and has rejected six recreational marijuana proposals so far this year.

As we have said before, marijuana’s proponents aren’t content with “medical marijuana.” The endgame is — and always has been — full legalization.

You can read the A.G.’s opinion about the first amendment here.

You can read the A.G.’s opinion about the second amendment here.

Photo By Cannabis Training University (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

Connecticut Passes Bill Undermining Electoral College

Yesterday the Connecticut Legislature passed a bill awarding the state’s electoral votes to the presidential candidate who wins the nationwide popular vote.

The bill makes Connecticut the newest member of the National Popular Vote Compact. The compact becomes binding once states representing at least 270 electoral votes join the agreement.

Under the compact, a state gives its electoral votes to the presidential candidate who receives the most votes nationwide. That means Connecticut’s electoral votes would go to the winner of the national popular vote rather than to the presidential candidate that most voters in Connecticut supported.

Family Council helped defeat a similar proposal in the Arkansas Legislature in 2009.

Under that proposal, Arkansas’ six electoral votes would have gone to the candidate who received the most votes from the rest of the nation instead of the candidate that most Arkansans voted for.

The measure effectively would have disenfranchised Arkansas voters and made Arkansas’ presidential votes irrelevant.

If you’re curious why the Electoral College is important and why we should not elect the president via a nationwide popular vote, here’s a short video explaining some of the strengths of the Electoral College: