The Hodgepodge - Daily Page
Texas Lottery News ... Read all about it here ...
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Originally Created: March 16, 2000
Updated: May 15, 2020 - AM
- Part 8 -
The Tax Break Shenanigans of J. Winston Krause
In 2008, Commissioner Krause sued the IRS to get a
refund of interest and penalties he had paid for a disallowed
deduction and income. The disallowed deduction ... he
bought Canadian dollars for $20K; claimed he paid
$2.8 million; he showed a loss of <$2.7 million> yet
he had sold the Canadian dollars for $19.5K. A 2010
5th Circuit of Appeals quote ... "Krause's Tax
Chicanery" A very interesting and telling story
about the man who Chairs our Lottery.
Part 8 Posted April 6, 2014
A Must Read For Texas Players.
Click graphic above ...
Playing the Lottery is Not Worth Dying Over
Italy, Spain & China suspended lottery sales in an attempt
to protect their citizens. Obviously, the US doesn't care
because they are continuing to lure millions of players from their
homes each day for the sole purpose of purchasing lottery
tickets - a non- essential product. What a confusing message
officials have sent ... They say, "stay at home and only leave
to purchase "essential" items - if your caught going out
you could be fined" as they continue to allow the sale of
lottery products. A must read. Posted 4/8/20. Click here
- Director Gary Grief's Favorite Pastime -
Traveling The World For Free
A minimum of 105 trips at a cost of a minimum
of $160,000. An unbeliebable story - Click here
Unsuspecting Player Receives Duplicate Quick Picks
& Are Texas Lottery Quick Picks Truly Random?
Unbelievable - Some lottery software allows lottery terminals to
print duplicate quick picks. Posted Nov 3, 2016. Click here
Playing the Lottery is
As it appears in The Intercept
Texas' Fun 5's
TX Supreme Court Hears
The Lawyers Blog
Media Coverage - Fun 5's
Director Gary Griefs
TX Attorney General
State Representative Thompson
How to play Fireball,
Duplicate Winning Numbers
Lottery Lawsuit Granted
NO Billion Dollar Winner
Virginia Player Receives
Texas Player Buys
Will Texas Honor
Editorial & Opinions by Dawn Nettles
5/15/20 - Yesterday I forgot to include the good news that the IGT/G-Tech reps got their bonuses back and for the last quarter too. Maybe my postings are getting results! I didn't hear that they received hazard pay which they should have gotten for running stores during a pandemic. I did not hear how many of them are sick - maybe someone will share this data too
One more thing .... yesterday I received an anonymous message telling me that I should congratulate lottery staff for their "soaring" sales ... I laughed because I KNEW this was an insider making an asinine statement. Folks - lottery staff gets NO credit for scratch ticket sales increasing - scratch tickets players will buy these tickets no matter what they are. Any piece of paper with latex on it and a chance to win some money would sell. Many, many scratch ticket players will spend their rent money, grocery money, gas money etc playing these games in hopes of winning money. The people I'm referencing do NOT read my site. In fact, most have no computers and no internet.
But on the other hand, lottery staff and Director Grief should get 100% of the credit for the decline of online sales by screwing up our games of choice. For the most part, online sales have declined for years. This would include Powerball and Mega Millions sales - the only thing that helps MM and PB each year are a couple of rolls where sales are driven by a huge jackpot amount.
Keep in mind, 85% of all lottery sales come from scratch ticket sales and this is really, really bad. This money comes from the low income areas. Which is NOT good.
My next story will focus on two lottery employees. I think you'll find it of great interest!
5/14/20 - A few interesting things and an update to the May 9th entry.
First, the good news - the TLC has announced they will re-open the Claim Centers on June 1, 2020. The ONLY details given thus far is that it will by by appointment ONLY. I've taken so many calls about this and I really feel making players hold on to their winning low tier prize money was a horrible injustice. This was equivalent to hitting a slot machine and the machine giving you a message to collect when they want to pay!
Guess your calls worked. I know some of you made calls - I just don't know how many calls all total.
An educated prediction ... When players are able to collect their winnings .... sales will SOAR again!
Next, the player I told you about on May 9th who made a claim in Feb but was sent away with no inkling of what was to come ... well, he miraculously received a $5 check earlier this week. With the banner I posted last week giving notice that I had a story coming was a dead giveaway that I'd be reporting the player received NOTHING. It appears to me that the TLC jumped out of their a-- to get him paid.
Can you imagine? You go to a claim center in Feb 2020 with what you think is a winning ticket and it takes until May 12 to get closure of any kind. If this was the private sector - the AG would come down big time on the firm.
Ya'll are asking about Mega Million and Powerball sales that I generally have posted by now. Seems like with all of our talk about the soaring sales during a pandemic, more of you are watching closely - not to mention - the media attention this issue is getting.
Anyway ... back to WHY I'm not current on sales ... the TLC adopted a new rule last Sept/Oct that allows them to charge for open records requests that exceeds so much staff time per year. We all knew this was directed at me because I make requests every week so I can keep ya'll in the know - so to speak. At the time they wrote this rule - I was working on the "Perks of a Lottery Director" story and was making a huge number of requests that they didn't like. My story is still not completed - however - I am getting ready to post two more sections in the very near future. Point to all this, I haven't received the information to post and the same thing applies to the scratch tickets data that I calculate and watch.
I hope to have a letter off tomorrow to the TLC to clarify a couple of things regarding their "charges." This would include questions about unrealistic methods of payment and Government Code 552,267 that reads ...
Having shown you Code 552.267, a paragraph in the the TLC's RULE §403.101 Open Records reads ...
Because the TLC is electing to charge me indicates one of two things ... they either don't think it is in YOUR best interest to be able to access the information OR they have changed their mind again about my being a member of the press! I surmise they will claim it is NOT in the "public interest" and IF they do, ya'll better speak up because this will be the making of ceasing Open Government.
I'll bring my pages current as soon as I'm able to obtain the info.
Finally , sales are STILL soaring. I've added - to my charts shown below - sales for the week of 5/9/20 so you can see the latest. Just scroll down or click here.
5/9/20 - This posting is in response to your many questions and problems reported to me recently ... ie ... the claim centers, unexpected deductions from your lottery claims (winnings) & a warning about those scratch ticket vending machines. Then, I'm going to share a little bit of incredible news like ... WHY the nurses and doctors have limited or NO masks and gowns (PPE) and the phenomenal record breaking scratch tickets sales at a time like this.
I'm going to start with the masks/ PPE - Covid-19 - which has us all in turmoil -
You can relax ... I'm not going to share my thoughts about the horrific situation our country is in. Rather I want to share WHY there's a shortage of masks and PPE (personal protective equipment). I found it extremely disturbing and I believe everyone should be privy to this information.
It was Dave Lieber, Watchdog at the Dallas Morning News, who investigated and reported his findings regarding the shortages. Click here to read his story.
Of the many educational facts I learned was that ONLY ONE private sector company - Vizient - located in Las Colinas (Irving TX) - controls most PPE purchases for the vast majority of the hospitals and health care facilities in the U.S. They have
Dave's story is mindboggling - For many years, Vizient has depended on and bought PPE from China and India. So when the U.S. was in dire need, Vizient couldn't get them because China needed these products for themselves. Our elected officials in Washington were well aware of this tidbit but has ignored it.
An interesting tidbit exposed in Dave's story - kickbacks are legal. Much like the government allows lotteries to disregard Advertising Consumer Laws which is also WRONG.
Imagine, U.S. doctors and nurses were told to go to "war" with NO equipment to defend themselves. I could go on but I won't. I'll shut up but I sincerely hope you will all go read Dave Lieber's story then call your elected officials - stop the kickbacks and get our ESSENTIAL supplies manufactured here in the US.
I want to extend my gratitude to Dave for his investigative reporting - he uncovered the truth and explained it in an easy to understand language. I applaud that.
Claim Centers closed ... You can NOT collect your winnings to get your "instant gratification"
I asked the TLC yesterday when they planned to open their claim centers but like another subject regarding "deductions" from your prize winnings - they have not replied.
I have several comments about the claim centers ... first and foremost, with the exception of the Austin claim center, very few people work in the Claim Centers so there is really no legitimate reason to keep them closed. TLC staff can practice social distancing and players can be kept at a distance. Keeping limitations on how many can enter their office at one time, they COULD be open and paying your winnings. When you call your elected officials, ask them about this issue as well, especially since they are "re-opening" the rest of the state.
But wait a minute .... maybe they are purposely not wanting to pay you ... an ulterior motive. Do you think???? Is this possible????
Are there going to be "unexpected deductions" from your prize winnings .... WHOA ... what does that mean???
On April 20, 2020, I asked, "People are receiving unemployment and stimulus checks now. I still want to know, IF they win something substantial playing the lottery where they collect from a claim center, and IF they've received either an unemployment check or a stimulus check, will the TLC deduct the amount paid in unemployment or the stimulus check from the players winnings????"
On April 23, 2020, I said, "I still need an answer to my question from March 26th and April 20. If ya'll can't or won't respond to my legitimate question, then please refer me to someone who can answer the question. Players have a right to know that if they win, they will be reimbursing the state for unemployment and the stimulus money from their winnings - IF that is the case."
As I write this story on May 8, 2020, they have not responded to my question. By reason of deduction, I think they may have something to hide. So, ya'll might need to know that if you win - you may not see anything! If you received a Stimulus check or unemployment, they may deduct the amount you received from your winnings. Since they won't respond, that's about the only thing I can conclude.
I will say - with regards to the Stimulus checks, they DEFINITELY will deduct Child Support from your winnings. But after you pay it unexpectantly, you should confirm that your ex received the money - after all - who can trust our government now? And I will add, you really should pay your child support before buying lottery tickets. (Sorry)
Anyway, MAYBE this is why they don't want to open the Claim Centers just yet. They want to be sure to deduct all monies paid to you so it would be in their best interest to keep Claim Centers closed. Know what I mean????
Interesting isn't it ... they want the citizens to go back to work in unsafe environments, but the state is protecting it's employees. This is called "two-faced." And YES, I'm plenty mad and I know it's showing in my writing. Or maybe I should say I'm disappointed to learn what I've learned about our elected officials.
BEWARE - If you purchase scratch tickets from the vending machines ...
Anyway, he goes to the claim center and fills out a claim form and submits his "two halves." They take one look then they tell him they'll have to "investigate" and will get back to him after forensics does their thing. After not hearing from anyone, the player called to inquire and was told verbally that his ticket was not a winner and that they would send him a new ticket. Which as of this writing, he still has not received. At any rate ....
He contacted an attorney who in turn referred him to me. After hearing his story and getting answers to all my questions, I explained what I would need to do and that I would get back to him
I made an open records request and obtained copies of his ticket and claim form. When I received documents responsive, I immediately knew what had happened. The vending machine was cutting that pack of tickets incorrectly meaning that every ticket bought on that game was - most likely - defective. Players were receiving the top half of one ticket and the bottom half of the next ticket in the pack. It was obvious to me and confirmed when he said, "I folded my ticket and it immediately broke in half." Logically, that's where the perforation was is what I surmised.
I then took it upon myself to investigate further where I learned from other retailers that this issue occurs and has for many years. It happened more often in the older machines and less often with the new machines because the new machines are "automated" in their programming when loading new packs of tickets. Previously, a store employee who loaded tickets would need to punch in the size, cost, ticket number etc but is not necessary now UNLESS they remove or adjust a pack of tickets. In which case they have to program all parameters.
Now here's where there's a serious problem ....
Earlier this week, I visited with the General Manager where the machine is STILL malfunctioning. I learned fast that the General Manager either knows nothing about the lottery or immediately got defensive because he told me that his staff has nothing to do with the lottery vending machine - rather - he said - the lottery rents the space from him and a lottery rep comes once a week to service the machine. WOW - I said to myself!!!!!! In response, I asked, "did you know ya'll are responsible for pulling closed games from the machine?" He said, "No, I don't know anything about that either." Hmmm ....
I decided it would be best for me to speak to others who have contact with the customers directly. I also spent time in the store this past week talking to lottery customers where I learned they've purchased tickets with bar codes cut off and tickets missing small sections of a ticket.
In conclusion, I determined that the "one" person who loads the tickets in the vending machine at that location needs training. I was not ever able to catch her in person to discuss the situation but I'm not certain that she would listen to me anyway due to an earlier incident in this store. This was the store where a IGT-G-Tech rep told her to NEVER listen to me! I did file a complaint with the TLC but nothing ever came of it. Imagine that!
Attention TLC - you know who this store is and I urge you to send someone out there to show the Service Manager how to load games in that machine. Most likely, this has been going on for a least two years. Be sure to explain to her what she has to do when she tries to load a partial pack too. OK????
I'll be watching.
Attention Players - Check the tickets you buy to make certain they are cut correctly. At the bottom of each scratch ticket - on the play side - is a ticket number then on the back of the ticket on top, you will see the ticket number again. Make sure they match.
In the middle of a pandemic and with the highest unemployment since the Great Depression, TX scratch ticket sales are SOARING ... Scratch ticket sales are the highest since the lottery began .... Unbelievable ...
Let me show you how lottery sales have done since the stimulus checks went out. As you review these figures, keep in mind that every year, when people get their tax refund checks, scratch ticket sales spike. It appears the same applies now with receipt of the Stimulus Checks.
Scratch Tickets - Weekly Sales
Total Weekly Sales
To bring in $6 billion per year, lottery sales need to
WOW ... can you believe this ...
Very interesting news stories that have
Gambling As An Essential Business ....
Lottery Sales Surging ...
The shortage of medical supplies
The many investigative stories of Dave Lieber -
This is it for today. Sorry my story is so long but it was important with several subjects!.
04/16/20 - Just a note to let ya'll know that I've been doing stories on individual pages rather than posting them all on my Hodgepodge page. I have placed links to those stories either on the left or above on this page so in a sense, it has been kept current.
As of this date, we are in the midst of a very serious pandemic and 96% of the United States is under a stay at home order. Because of the Corona Virus (Covid 19), we are only allowed to leave home to go to work - if we are an essential business - or to buy groceries and meds.
Last week I posted a story about the need to suspend sales of all lottery products as it's really too dangerous for players to go out for the sole purpose of buying lottery tickets. Which IS being done on a daily basis by millions in spite of the very contagious virus.
Literally millions are unemployed now and are spending their discretionary money on lottery and eight liners rather than supporting those businesses that NEEDS support. This just seems so wrong to me. Buying a lottery ticket is not an "essential" purchase.
I find it of great interest that state leaders forced "non-essential" businesses to shut down but the state continues to sell their NON-ESSENTIAL lottery products. Why do they not HAVE to follow their own rules? Do they not care that over a million people leave home each day for the sole purpose of purchasing lottery tickets? Do they not care to calculate just how many people are being put at risk due to Covid-19?
The truth is, all our elected officials have ever cared about is the money a lottery brings in and they could care less that much of it comes from people who can least afford to play. Nor do they appear to care about the employees of lottery vendors (IGT/G-Tech) who are putting their lives at risk by running convenience stores. And getting a pay cut at that!!!
State officials are foolish enough to actually believe scratch ticket sales increase every year because the tickets are so popular. I wonder what they would think if they found out the reason scratch ticket sales increase each year is due 100% to low tier prize money being returned as it's won. Each year, the Texas Lottery increases the number of low tier prizes guaranteeing an increase in sales. You see, most players give back his winnings in an attempt to win BIG.
I wonder why our elected officials have failed to ask why there's hundreds of million of dollars in unclaimed prizes? Seems as though they just take the money but ask no questions. They should be asking if: 1) there really was the number of winners reported and 2) what was wrong with XYZ scratch ticket that had an unusually high number of unclaimed prizes. Very sad - money is the only thing they care about. Yet they were elected to represent the People and do what's in the best interest of their constituents.
Anyway, let's get back on track with today's news ... Covid-19 and sale of lottery products.
I called Governor Abbott, Senator Hall, Senator Cruz, Senator Cornyn, State Representative Neave & Dallas County. So far, only one has replied to my inquiry - why lottery sales have not been suspended - and that was Dallas County. The short response was ... "Dawn, good evening. Thank you for reaching out. The Texas Lottery Commission oversees the Texas Lottery and Dallas County has no jurisdiction in this matter." I did disagree with the "County" not having any jurisdiction - they have the jurisdiction to tell retailers what they can and cannot sell in their county.
Today, there's a huge story in The Intercept, a National Political publicaton, about state leaders deeming lottery products as "essential" products in spite of the fact that many retailers and lottery employees are objecting. You should all go read it. You might want to check out the rest of the publication too!
I know my readers are lottery players and you are probably objecting to my call for suspending lottery sales. For that I'm sorry. But this is truly a life or death issue. Life is short, shorter than you think. The virus is temporary - it will pass and life will go on. If you are still here, that is.
The Lotto Report
P. O. Box 495033
Garland, Texas 75049-5033
(972) 681-1048 Fax