Lottery and BP: lawmakers focus on two bills to help Medicaid

MONTGOMERY, AL (WSFA) - A state lottery bill needs to only get through the house this week, while a BP bill just needs to get through the Senate.

Getting a lottery out of the Senate was seen as the greatest challenge for a potential lottery.

However, issues are still there. The lottery was supposed to have its revenue split, with 90 percent going to the general fund and the remaining 10 percent to education. However, that portion of the bill was overwritten by a later amendment, which would require $100 million to go to the general fund.

Lawmakers will likely be forced to correct the misstep in committee Tuesday. Even though a lottery is out of the senate, it's passage is not a sure thing
but it's facing better odds than just a week ago.

A lottery passed the senate without a vote to spare. Now the bill heads to the house where it needs 63 votes to pass. If passed a lottery is seen as a long term solution to help out Medicaid.

For the short term answer many lawmakers are looking at the BP settlement bill.

There are two versions of the bill, one frees up about $70 million to Medicaid and $190 million for road projects for Alabama's gulf. Another proposal, which Sen. Paul Sandford said Friday he would bring on the Senate floor, sends no money to the gulf, but about $155 million over the next two years to Medicaid.

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