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Georgia bill would allow lottery winners to remain anonymous — for a price

Georgia LotteryGeorgia Lottery: Georgia bill would allow lottery winners to remain anonymous — for a price
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The Georgia Senate's higher education committee voted in favor Tuesday of allowing a bill to move forward that would allow lottery winners to remain anonymous — but they would have to pay for that privacy.

Senate Minority Leader Steve Henson, the lead sponsor of Senate Bill 331, said the legislation is aimed at protecting multi-million dollar lottery winners from scam artists and other criminals.

"It could put you at risk," Henson said during Tuesday's committee meeting.

Henson said eight states have laws that offer lottery winners complete or partial anonymity.

Committee chairman Sen. Fran Millar, R-Dunwoody, said lawmakers must weigh the privacy concerns Henson laid out against concerns the bill would reduce public transparency.

"There are pros and cons on both sides," he said.

The Georgia First Amendment Foundation has raised transparency concerns. (See Georgia group fights to prevent lottery winners from claiming anonymously, Lottery Post, Jan. 29, 2018.)

The bill would require winners seeking anonymity to give up to 4 percent of their winnings to the state for officials to manage open records requests and other costs to maintain confidentiality.

Lottery proceeds help fund the state's HOPE college scholarship program.

AJC, Lottery Post Staff

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30 comments. Last comment 5 months ago by Suzy-Dittlenose.
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Simpsonville
United States
Member #163189
January 22, 2015
1320 Posts
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Posted: January 31, 2018, 9:29 am - IP Logged

Honestly is this best they can do?  Ripoff potential winners.  What a crock.

    Avatar

    United States
    Member #180553
    March 12, 2017
    44 Posts
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    Posted: January 31, 2018, 9:39 am - IP Logged

    Honestly is this best they can do?  Ripoff potential winners.  What a crock.

    This is a crock and nothing but a money grab by the state.

    It shouldn’t cost anything to remain anonymous.

      CDanaT's avatar - tiger avatar_04_hd_pictures_169016.jpg
      Central TN
      United States
      Member #121193
      January 4, 2012
      2336 Posts
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      Posted: January 31, 2018, 10:23 am - IP Logged

      Honestly is this best they can do?  Ripoff potential winners.  What a crock.

      I Agree!

      Funny, I thought our publicly elected officials were there to represent us. While I don't reside in GA. nor do I vote for their leadership, this subject kind of sticks in my backside and makes me truly wonder why they don't want to provide protection for their voters who are winners ? If the winner goes on "facebook" or "Twitter" or other social/media sites and say "I won I won", then it is that persons right and choice to draw attention to themselves and their new fortune.

      Most lottery players have heard of the tragedies of winners who were prayed upon and we all know about Abraham Shakespeare and his horrific and tragic ending. 

      I did see one statement that someone on this site was worried about ISIS winning a jackpot was their support for non anonymity..... We all know the rules or have access to them of who can win and the taxes to be withheld .... I wont comment any further.

      Anonymity should be allowed. Independent audits by professional agencies(like E&Y) can be conducted to assure that rules are followed. Your privacy and personal safety on a legally allowed activity, should be always be considered....  Trust but verify...... Just my 2 cents....

      I wish each and every poster on this site much luck this year.

      Integrity  is the simple act of doing what is right at all times

        konane's avatar - wallace
        Atlanta, GA
        United States
        Member #1265
        March 13, 2003
        4283 Posts
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        Posted: January 31, 2018, 10:24 am - IP Logged

        4% is high so maybe they'll arrive at a lower percentage, but hope it passes.  There are many companies whose sole focus is selling our personal information. We receive nothing in return except perhaps in some cases identity theft. 

        As pointed out in Lottery Post's previous article there are real concerns for physical safety of winners based on past tragic events.

        The best of luck to everyone! Sun Smiley

          music*'s avatar - box
          The Big Valley in California
          United States
          Member #157856
          August 2, 2014
          2493 Posts
          Offline
          Posted: January 31, 2018, 10:25 am - IP Logged

          Each State is different. There is no such thing as a free lunch. Tinstafl. The costs will be paid by the winner and not taxpayers. 

          Cool

            Muddy water is best cleared by leaving it alone.  Alan Watts and Zen Buddhism

            lejardin's avatar - Lottery-014.jpg

            United States
            Member #118609
            November 4, 2011
            1325 Posts
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            Posted: January 31, 2018, 11:03 am - IP Logged

            Anything for a buck, I agree what a CROCK.

              Avatar
              Atlanta
              United States
              Member #163179
              January 22, 2015
              340 Posts
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              Posted: January 31, 2018, 12:03 pm - IP Logged

              How quickly they forget the recent home invasion/murder of the Columbus GA man who recently won a big Fantasy 5 jackpot, if he had the option to remain anonymous in his small town/neighborhood, maybe he'd still be alive and the perpretrators not gotten such light sentences!  That is insane!

                dpoly1's avatar - driver
                PA
                United States
                Member #66141
                October 16, 2008
                1820 Posts
                Offline
                Posted: January 31, 2018, 1:50 pm - IP Logged

                One more Government rip off!

                Cussing Face

                dpoly1 - Playing the lottery to save the jobs of those that build, transport, sell & maintain luxury items! -

                 

                Eschew Poverty ........... Vote Conservative!

                  MillionsWanted's avatar - 24Qa6LT

                  Norway
                  Member #9517
                  December 10, 2004
                  1457 Posts
                  Online
                  Posted: January 31, 2018, 2:04 pm - IP Logged

                  One more Government rip off!

                  Cussing Face

                  Might be worth it if you live in the wrong part of town or know criminals. Or got greedy relatives. Wink

                    noise-gate's avatar - images q=tbn:ANd9GcR91HDs4UJhjxO7cmeMQWZ5lB_FOcMLOGicau4V74R45tDgPWrr
                    Chasing the Dream.
                    White Shores- California
                    United States
                    Member #136477
                    December 12, 2012
                    5081 Posts
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                    Posted: January 31, 2018, 2:10 pm - IP Logged

                    It's a catch 22. If you a lottery winner, and you love living in the State of Georgia & want anonymity, you going to have to cough up the 4%. If you not enamoured with Georgia, your only choice is to do what Anthony Bourdain does, head to " Parts Unknown." 

                     * Voice of Reason *   

                     

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

                      Avatar
                      New Member

                      United States
                      Member #187658
                      January 31, 2018
                      2 Posts
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                      Posted: January 31, 2018, 2:39 pm - IP Logged

                      Some very good ideas on this thread on how to maintain anonymity but still provide some transparency. Too bad the people who are running the bill through aren't reading them.

                      I still don't get why they are trying to do this with the 4% price tag, because that virtually guarantees winners of larger amounts, say over 25 million, are never going to use the option. You can get a competent lawyer to set up LLC's, trusts, even do legal name changes, for a lot less than that.

                        Think's avatar - lightbulb
                        Marquette, MI
                        United States
                        Member #20541
                        August 20, 2005
                        790 Posts
                        Offline
                        Posted: January 31, 2018, 4:16 pm - IP Logged

                        State lotteries are pretty much monopolies.

                        We need some competition to protect us from crappy lotteries.  It is time to legalize playing by phone, computer or mail other U.S. state lotteries from any state in the U.S.

                        Then the player can decide which games they want to play and where.

                        See how fast the bad games and bad policies disappear then!!

                          Think's avatar - lightbulb
                          Marquette, MI
                          United States
                          Member #20541
                          August 20, 2005
                          790 Posts
                          Offline
                          Posted: January 31, 2018, 4:22 pm - IP Logged

                          Each State is different. There is no such thing as a free lunch. Tinstafl. The costs will be paid by the winner and not taxpayers. 

                          Cool

                          HA! Good one.

                          In most states the winners pay taxes on their winnings!

                          If Georgia makes winners pay taxes on the winnings then they shouldn't double tax them to remain anonymous.

                          I don't know what the GA tax rate is but if it is 5% then the tax on a $10,000,000 win is $500,000 and that should easily be way more than enough

                          to simply not release the winners information.

                            DEE88's avatar - animal doggy2.jpg
                            PA
                            United States
                            Member #69849
                            January 18, 2009
                            17034 Posts
                            Offline
                            Posted: January 31, 2018, 4:33 pm - IP Logged

                                  Who's to say after your pay that 4% tax that they still won't release your personal information... I would have to have something in writing stating that none of my personal information will not be leaked out to the media or anyone else..and they will be held liable for it if it does happen..Yes Nod

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