Lottery a possibility for infrastructure

Published 8:57 pm Monday, May 8, 2017

Mississippi officials are rolling out new ideas to pay for road and bridges. Republican Gov. Phil Bryant says a lottery is one possibility.

Mississippi is one of six states without a lottery and Bryant said that he might ask legislators to consider creating one during a special session next month, but only if the state chamber of commerce supports using the proceeds from the game to help pay for highways and bridges.

Corey Britt of Brookhaven fully supports a state lottery.

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“The people of Mississippi that want to buy lottery tickets are having to go across state lines to get them. That is a lot of money leaving the state of Mississippi that could help with our economy, schools and highways. Also, who wouldn’t want a chance at a million dollars?” Britt said.

While Britt remains in favor of it, Keri Leggett also of Brookhaven, is a bit more skeptical.

“I’d be for it if the money was used to fund education, but that was supposed to happen when the casinos came and we don’t know where all that money goes,” Leggett said.

House Speaker Philip Gunn, a Republican and a Baptist church leader from Clinton, opposes a lottery but created a group to study it. Legislators begin a special session on June 5 to finish the state budget for the year that begins July 1.