New Jersey Lottery all set for privatization
After a court ruling this week, the New Jersey Lottery is now able to sign a contract to move for privatization of the New Jersey Lottery.
For months, Governor Chris Christie had been pushing to privatize the Lottery, in order to increase revenue and allow for more ways to update the game to attract younger players.
Wednesday June 12, a New Jersey appeals panel ruled that the state could move forward with their privatization deal, but with the caveat that they required further meetings to look over the details of the move to a privately owned lottery.
Christie is hoping Northstar New Jersey, the only bidder for the 15-year sales and marketing operations contract, will become the new private owners of lottery operations for the New Jersey Lottery. IF it goes through, the deal will require Northstar to pay the New Jersey government $120 million before it is able to gain control of lottery operations for marketing and sales.
In early May, Christie vetoed a bill that would require the state legislature to approve privatization of parts of the state lottery. Christie asserted that the privatization contract would be limited to the marketing and sales departments. He hopes this will help modernize the lottery and not hinder it or its employees.
Lottery workers who are members of the Communications Workers of America union filed to stop the privatization of the lottery, fearing their jobs were in jeopardy. With a total of 60 potential layoffs, the workers were against the move and fought to keep the lottery public to maintain their jobs. The state Treasury said as many as half of the current workers for the lottery could be affected by the move. However, he gave solace to workers by saying they will be able to seek employment elsewhere within the government or apply directly to Northstar without conflict.
The move will not be in effect until the appeals court has had time to look over all details of the agreemtn. Christie hopes the move will bring more funds for the state and that privatization will help revamp the lottery.