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Florida lawmakers want to slap addiction warning notices on every lottery ticket

May 2, 2019, 8:53 am

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Florida LotteryFlorida Lottery: Florida lawmakers want to slap addiction warning notices on every lottery ticketRating:

Yet alcohol is warning-free?

Booze and beer don't carry similar cautions, but some Republican lawmakers want people playing the state lottery to be warned that the games may be addictive.

With the 2019 legislative session in its final days, the Senate is considering a proposal that would require all lottery tickets to include a warning, which also would be part of any advertisements for the state-sponsored games.

The bill would require the tickets and promotions to include the words: "Warning: Lottery games may be addictive," or "Play responsibly," under an amendment approved Wednesday by the Senate.

Hours earlier, Florida Lottery Secretary Jim Poppell asked Senate Democrats to vote against the measure, which he said "doesn't tell people what they need."

The proposal not only requires a warning label on tickets "but a warning label that would have to be on just about everything that could be construed as promoting the lottery," Poppell said.

"That would be vending machines, play stations where you get your paper to bubble in the numbers, on every sign, on every advertisement — radio, television, social media, what have you," Poppell said.

The House last month overwhelmingly approved a version of the bill with a longer, more-dire message: "Warning: Playing a Lottery game constitutes gambling and may lead to addiction and/or compulsive behavior. The chances of winning a big prize are very low." House Speaker José Oliva, R-Miami Lakes, strongly supports the proposal, and told reporters Wednesday evening he also backs the modified Senate version.

"I thnk it's important that somewhere on the face of that ticket someone at least have a moment of reflection to understand what they're engaging in and hopefully play responsibly," he said.

The Senate never passed its own version of the bill, but the Senate Rules Committee last week took up and approved the House's measure.

During a Senate floor session Wednesday, Appropriations Chairman Rob Bradley said he proposed shortening the warning message to assuage concerns from other senators "who think that the language is too much."

But, he insisted, the warning is necessary.

"For some folks, their brain works in a way that they can become addicted to gaming just like you can become addicted to alcohol and drugs," Bradley, R-Fleming Island, said.

More is known about addiction than when the lottery was created more than three decades ago, Bradley said.

"This is a government-run gaming operation. That's what it is," he said, adding the warning gives the state an opportunity to create a "balanced message where we want people to know, we want you to play but this is not gaming light."

The Florida Lottery's annual sales have grown to more than $6 billion since tickets first went on sale in 1988. The money is used to help fund the state's education system, including Bright Futures scholarships.

Democrats shared Poppell's concerns about the warnings' negative impact on sales and on education funding. According to state economists, the warnings in the House bill would cause a $64 million drop in revenues steered to schools in 2021, when the bill would go into effect. That amount is projected to increase in subsequent years.

"We brag about the... billions of dollars that's gone into education. Some would say we're addicted to that money," Sen. Bill Montford, a Tallahassee Democrat and a former Leon County superintendent of schools, said during Wednesday's floor discussion.

But Bradley said the shorter warnings proposed by the Senate should mitigate some of the financial shortfall.

The reduction in education funding would be made up with other revenue sources, said Bradley, who acknowledged the warnings could have an impact, "because when you tell people what they're doing, they may make a decision not to do it, which I don't think is a bad thing."

Former Gov. Rick Scott vetoed a similar measure in 2017, saying it would impose "burdensome regulations" on the games and retailers. Poppell's open opposition to the proposal could also reflect opposition from his boss, Gov. Ron DeSantis.

In his remarks to the Senate Democrats, Poppell said the Florida Lottery "has worked very hard" to receive certification by the National Council on Problem Gambling.

"They looked at everything," he said, "and certified that we are acting in a responsible manner."

Lottery tickets already are printed with a hotline number for addicted gamblers to get help, Poppell said.

"This is what we learned is the most important thing we can do," he said.

Lottery retailers are worried about "the volume of negativity," the secretary added.

"It isn't just a warning label on the ticket. It is this message on everything. And it has to be prominently displayed. So our retailers are expressing concern," he said.

The Senate could vote on the measure as early as Thursday. If it is approved, the proposal would have to be sent back to the House. Ultimately, the two chambers would have to agree on the warning details before a bill could go to DeSantis.

Sun-Sentinel

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34 comments. Last comment 2 years ago by Pharm girl.
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Original Bey's avatar - Lottery-022.jpg

Bahamas
Member #133456
September 30, 2012
6792 Posts
Offline

While other states are implementing legislation to protect its winner's privacy, FL........Blue Thinking

"Do everything you can. Then, leave the rest to luck."

    kandi56's avatar - masked
    georgetown sc
    United States
    Member #193667
    November 8, 2018
    277 Posts
    Offline

    what is so sad they do this like drugs they put it out there and when it gets out of hand than they will be/trying to figure a way to stop it  after they have become billionairesMad

      CDanaT's avatar - Nolz june15.jpg
      Central TN
      United States
      Member #121187
      January 4, 2012
      5328 Posts
      Offline

      We don't have that particular verbiage on the front of our TN tickets. They all say " PLAY TODAY!" To be fair, it does state on the back, in all purple capitol letters, directly under the signature line, to "play responsibly".

      Integrity: There is just no substitute.

        TheMeatman2005's avatar - lightening
        Brooklyn, NY
        United States
        Member #169716
        October 29, 2015
        1527 Posts
        Offline

        We don't have that particular verbiage on the front of our TN tickets. They all say " PLAY TODAY!" To be fair, it does state on the back, in all purple capitol letters, directly under the signature line, to "play responsibly".

        In New York, the lottery has printed on the back of every ticket...... "Please Play Responsibly" and a 24-hour confidential hopeline number for help with problem gambling. They also have a similar message on the back of each play slip.

        For most, winning a big lottery prize would be a dream come true. But, at what cost?

        The Meatman 🥩🍗🍔🍖🍤🌭

        “The quickest way to double your money is to fold it in half and put it in your back pocket.” Will Rogers

        Winning happens in a flash, Like A Bolt Of Lightning!  Patriot

          Avatar
          Chasing $ Millions.
          White Shores- California
          United States
          Member #136471
          December 12, 2012
          6684 Posts
          Offline

          In New York, the lottery has printed on the back of every ticket...... "Please Play Responsibly" and a 24-hour confidential hopeline number for help with problem gambling. They also have a similar message on the back of each play slip.

          For most, winning a big lottery prize would be a dream come true. But, at what cost?

          In California, we have this printed on the FRONT of EVERY lottery ticket, that includes PB & MM tickets as well. Related image

           * Voice of Reason *   

          * The Truth Hurts *

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

            music*'s avatar - DiscoBallGlowing
            USN United States Navy
            Fresno, California
            United States
            Member #157849
            August 2, 2014
            3959 Posts
            Offline

            Advertising the 1 - 800 - # is the first step to help addicted players.  Cell phones are almost everywhere. 

             As long as the funding for the help is not cut. 

             "We are all in this together!" 

              Avatar

              United States
              Member #175642
              June 27, 2016
              275 Posts
              Offline

              I think the warnings SHOULD be in lottery tickets.

               

              Just look at the face of this cow!

               

              This cow's a waste of money! I mean who wins this thing?

                Artist77's avatar - batman14

                United States
                Member #121739
                January 16, 2012
                7775 Posts
                Offline

                I think the warnings SHOULD be in lottery tickets.

                 

                Just look at the face of this cow!

                 

                This cow's a waste of money! I mean who wins this thing?

                That cow is cute!

                Je vous salue, Marie, pleine de grace.  We will rebuild!

                  Avatar

                  United States
                  Member #175642
                  June 27, 2016
                  275 Posts
                  Offline

                  That cow is cute!

                  The may be cute on the outside, but inside it's ripping all your wallet (and your soul).

                   

                   

                  Lottery tickets are addictive. And please,  men (and women) in 60s and 70s with very young grandchildren don't show off your lottery habit in front of your grandkids, because they will become addictive players, unless you've won MM or PB and want to stop or take a break. AND GIFT RESPONSIBLY!

                    Artist77's avatar - batman14

                    United States
                    Member #121739
                    January 16, 2012
                    7775 Posts
                    Offline

                    The may be cute on the outside, but inside it's ripping all your wallet (and your soul).

                     

                     

                    Lottery tickets are addictive. And please,  men (and women) in 60s and 70s with very young grandchildren don't show off your lottery habit in front of your grandkids, because they will become addictive players, unless you've won MM or PB and want to stop or take a break. AND GIFT RESPONSIBLY!

                    Then do not play scratchers. I don't.

                    Je vous salue, Marie, pleine de grace.  We will rebuild!

                      Avatar
                      Jacksonville
                      United States
                      Member #153799
                      March 26, 2014
                      774 Posts
                      Offline

                      Buy some of the Florida Lottery's newest $30 scratch-off ticket and the horrid payouts will end any addiction.

                        Avatar
                        Kentucky
                        United States
                        Member #32651
                        February 14, 2006
                        9210 Posts
                        Offline

                        With lottery retailers on every corner, Florida lawmakers are now worried about problem gambling and want more warnings on the tickets so players can see them AFTER they buy the tickets. LOL

                          Groppo's avatar - cat anm.gif

                          United States
                          Member #162624
                          January 7, 2015
                          780 Posts
                          Offline

                          .

                          Yes, please slap the addiction notice on every ticket, if you wish.
                          But please don't change anything else, unless you want to make better odds for the players or
                          something along those lines.

                          My name is Groppo and I'm a gambler . . . ..

                          (welcome groppo, keep coming back . . . . .is there any more coffee back there?) . . . . .  )

                          • Don't chase the numbers you play.
                          • Play only numbers you've already played, plus however many random picks.
                          • But, ALWAYS the regular numbers you play.  This will make you a winner, not a chaser.
                                     (so far, though, I've yet to win any significant lotto prize)
                          • Oh, but always know where your tickets are, as well as your ticket's deadline.
                            Avatar
                            100
                            New York, NY
                            United States
                            Member #140628
                            March 23, 2013
                            11223 Posts
                            Offline

                            Cash winfall? They played responsibly. Lol

                            Sometimes you do the right thing just because it’s right.

                            You're only as good as your crew.