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Illinois lottery players crossing border to play in other states

Illinois LotteryIllinois Lottery: Illinois lottery players crossing border to play in other states

Players lose confidence as budget stalemate halts winner payouts

Randall Lobello of Bensenville said he still plans to buy lottery tickets, despite the Illinois Lottery's announcement Wednesday that even more winners will be getting IOUs.

He'll just play in another state, one where winnings would be paid out immediately.

"I do a lot of traveling; I would just jump to the border and go to Wisconsin," said Lobello, 47. "I used to buy lottery tickets in Illinois, but I'm not purchasing them anymore. If they're not paying when they say they're going to pay, I have no confidence in the future."

As of Thursday, Illinois Lottery payments for any winnings over $600 are being delayed until the state budget stalemate is resolved. Lottery officials said the agency's check-writing account is depleted and no authority can replenish it, though winnings under $600 can still be retrieved immediately at retail kiosks.

The Illinois Lottery began delaying payments in July, at first only for prizes larger than $25,000 due to state law barring larger payouts because the legislature must authorize the state comptroller to release the funds.

Two winners sued the Illinois Lottery in federal court last month, alleging fraud.

Their attorney, Thomas Zimmerman Jr. of Zimmerman Law Offices, said he plans to file an amended complaint later this month, adding at least 20 other lottery winners whose payments have also been delayed. He expects more winners will join the class-action suit now that the lottery has lowered the amount for immediate payouts.

"The state is violating the lottery law by using the money to pay the lottery's operating costs and ongoing administrative expenses ... without first paying winnings," Zimmerman said. "Is the lottery director not earning a paycheck? And all of the employees who run the lottery, how are they getting paid?"

The lawsuit also named the lottery's acting director, B.R. Lane, the lottery's private management company Northstar Lottery Group and the Illinois Lottery Control Board. An Illinois Lottery spokesman said he could not comment on pending legal action.

Joe Joost, 62, a truck driver from Chicago's Belmont Cragin neighborhood, said he's joining the lawsuit. He was in a pool of 25 Illinois Lottery players who won $1 million in early September, with $28,500 in winnings for him after taxes, but the state hasn't released the prize yet.

Joost said he and his pool intend to keep playing the lottery, but they won't buy another ticket in Illinois. They're going to cross state lines.

"We have one gentleman who goes to Michigan about once a week," he said. "If he's going up to Michigan, we'll play in Michigan. We have another gentleman who goes to Indiana a lot."

A worker at Red Roof Liquor & Lottery in Columbia, Ill., near the Missouri state line, said about 80 percent of his clientele typically come from Missouri. With gas and cigarettes cheaper in Missouri, the Illinois Lottery used to be the biggest draw for patrons, but he said that's no longer the case.

"For the last two months we've seen a decrease, since September," said the worker, who did not want to be named. "People are saying the state won't pay them."

Casimir Soczyk, who works at Santori's Liquors in south suburban Lansing, said ever since lottery payments were delayed, customers keep talking about going to nearby Indiana to buy tickets.

"I've had people say 'I'm done with this,' but I've seen them come back," he said. "More people are bringing it up."

Tom Remsen, 33, of Rockford, said he buys lottery tickets about four times a year when there's a big jackpot. He said he'll continue to play in Illinois despite the payment delay, because it would still be worth it to win big even if he has to wait for payment.

"I'd just hope like heck that it would come," he said.

But he does wonder how Illinois officials would respond if the situation were reversed.

"How would the state react if we told them we don't have the money to pay taxes," he said, "but when it becomes available, we'll be sure to give it to you?"

Chicago Tribune

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36 comments. Last comment 1 year ago by Coin Toss.
Page 1 of 3

United States
Member #106134
February 13, 2011
806 Posts
Posted: October 17, 2015, 9:26 am - IP Logged

This is good!  Players are getting smart and boycotting these a$$holes.

    butch2030's avatar - DiscoBallGlowing
    The KEY ingredient is Combos & Patterns
    Elgin, IL
    United States
    Member #68867
    January 1, 2009
    1229 Posts
    Posted: October 17, 2015, 9:58 am - IP Logged

    Just bought my Mega Millions tickets in Lake Geneva, WI this past Thursday for 8 draws -  I am good thru 11/10/15.  It's only a 45 min drive one way & if I win I will save on state taxes.  WI is  @ 5.000% vs IL is @6.125%.  On a Grand Prize winning of 100 million, I save over a million in state taxes.  It's a Win Win situation.

    P.S.  Wisconsin does not pass out I.O.U.'s............................................................

    Think Smart, Play Smart....................................................................................

    Illinois State Legislators need to WAKE up & WISE up.............................................................

    Just Think if all winners of prizes over $600.00 joined the class action Law suit against the STATE OF ILLINOIS.............................

    Think you have problems now ------- Just Wait..........................

      haymaker's avatar - Lottery-012.jpg
      Egg Harbor twp.south Jersey shore
      United States
      Member #112968
      June 29, 2011
      3910 Posts
      Posted: October 17, 2015, 10:43 am - IP Logged

      Gas and cigs are cheaper in Missouri, if you're close to the border  now you can get your cigs,

      fill your tank and buy lottery there.

      Illinois loses money on all 3.


      Is beer cheaper there also ?

      Extraordinary Popular Delusions & the Madness of Crowds    -- Charles Mackay  LL.D.

        MADDOG10's avatar - smoke
        Beautiful Florida
        United States
        Member #5709
        July 18, 2004
        20521 Posts
        Posted: October 17, 2015, 10:45 am - IP Logged

        "" But he does wonder how Illinois officials would respond if the situation were reversed.

        "How would the state react if we told them we don't have the money to pay taxes," he said, "but when it becomes available, we'll be sure to give it to you?""


        I would think you answered your own question.  Another obvious question would be, why are you still playing

        the Lottery in that State?


                                                       " You can not control the Wind, but you can direct the Sail "

          music*'s avatar - bee
          Fresno California
          United States
          Member #157856
          August 2, 2014
          1682 Posts
          Posted: October 17, 2015, 11:01 am - IP Logged

          Confused Something does not smell right. I think that there will be a revelation soon that will make the national news. Illinois' government is hiding something.Mad

          Keep the good times rolling !!!  White Bounce

            TnTicketlosers's avatar - Lottery-065.jpg

            United States
            Member #71120
            February 19, 2009
            1209 Posts
            Posted: October 17, 2015, 11:04 am - IP Logged

            So do I,cross over to the better lands.

              temptustoo's avatar - cat anm.gif
              United States
              Member #89197
              April 2, 2010
              2826 Posts
              Posted: October 17, 2015, 11:19 am - IP Logged

              The states are so broke and this money was for education and now all they are doing is finding ways to steal the lottery money........  totally ruining a good thing......

                Gambler4Life's avatar - Lottery-011.jpg
                United States
                Member #151482
                January 18, 2014
                47 Posts
                Posted: October 17, 2015, 11:40 am - IP Logged

                Illinois and Missouri are the lottery labels that pay me.

                  noise-gate's avatar - images q=tbn:ANd9GcR91HDs4UJhjxO7cmeMQWZ5lB_FOcMLOGicau4V74R45tDgPWrr
                  Chasing the Dream.
                  Utopia- California
                  United States
                  Member #136477
                  December 12, 2012
                  4255 Posts
                  Posted: October 17, 2015, 11:51 am - IP Logged

                   When your State lottery has no problem collecting your money but fails to return the " favor"... desperate times calls for desperate measures.

                  Image result for why shouldn't i give up

                  People who say it cannot be done should not interrupt those who are doing it- George Bernard Shaw.

                    Drenick1's avatar - villiarna
                    United States
                    Member #152799
                    February 25, 2014
                    1095 Posts
                    Posted: October 17, 2015, 12:21 pm - IP Logged

                    Illinois and Missouri are the lottery labels that pay me.

                    Missouri will still pay you but I highly doubt you can cash in any large winners from Illinois anytime soon.

                      JADELottery's avatar - CombAveStd 02.PNG
                      The Quantum Master
                      West Concord, MN
                      United States
                      Member #21
                      December 7, 2001
                      3813 Posts
                      Posted: October 17, 2015, 2:03 pm - IP Logged

                      My GIF to you Illinois.


                      Presented 'AS IS' and for Entertainment Purposes Only.
                      Any gain or loss is your responsibility.
                      Use at your own risk.

                      Order is a Subset of Chaos
                      Knowledge is Beyond Belief
                      Wisdom is Not Censored
                      Douglas Paul Smallish

                        hearsetrax's avatar - 0118

                        United States
                        Member #52345
                        May 21, 2007
                        2713 Posts
                        Posted: October 17, 2015, 2:12 pm - IP Logged

                        My GIF to you Illinois.


                          Gleno's avatar - Lottery-001.jpg
                          New Jersey
                          United States
                          Member #80354
                          September 25, 2009
                          716 Posts
                          Posted: October 17, 2015, 4:10 pm - IP Logged



                          When the politicians get their act together and pass a budget they will no doubt see a shortfall in their lottery income, if they have not already seen it.

                          Maybe the folks in Illinois will actually see more money in their pockets at the end of the month, from not playing the lottery!


                            United States
                            Member #78052
                            August 6, 2009
                            810 Posts
                            Posted: October 17, 2015, 5:45 pm - IP Logged

                            oooop!  Wong topic!

                            Life Is Wonderful If You Don't Weaken