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House of Representatives
Session of 2017 - 2018 Regular Session


Posted: March 22, 2017 12:37 PM
From: Representative Morgan Cephas
To: All House members
Subject: Redirecting Unclaimed Gambling Winnings to the Lottery Fund
In the near future, I plan on introducing legislation that would amend Title 4 (Amusements) to redirect unclaimed gambling winnings to the Lottery Fund in order to further fund programs for older Pennsylvanians, such as Property Tax and Rent Relief.

According to the Pennsylvania Department of Aging's recent testimony, Pennsylvania's population that is 60 and older is growing more rapidly than any other segments of the population. The Commonwealth is home to more than 12.8 million residents which includes approximately 2.9 million adults age 60 and older, and more than 300,000 are age 85 and older.

By 2020, the population of older Pennsylvanians is projected to increase by 25%, and the population of Pennsylvanians aged 80 and over is projected to increase by 20,000 individuals. Given the anticipated population growth and looming budget concerns, it remains critical to identify new funding streams to provide and expand the resources and services to our older adults.

Expansions in funding will provide key assistance to Pennsylvania’s aging population, especially those who struggle to afford necessary things like medicine, food, and to pay their property taxes. This should not happen to those state residents who have spent their lives working hard to provide for their families and communities. We must ensure that our most vulnerable residents are able to remain engaged and active, and are protected from abuse and neglect.

Currently, after five years, unclaimed winnings are sent to the Department of the Treasury as unclaimed property. Under my proposal, individuals would have up to a year to claim their winnings before waiving rights to them and having those winnings transferred to the State Lottery Fund. Funds from these unclaimed winnings can help to expand supports and a broad range of services that help older Pennsylvanians live as independently as possible.

Please join me in co-sponsoring this important legislation.

Introduced as HB1162