Continued ....

The Hodgepodge Page
Texas Lottery News ... Read all about it here ...

Brought to you by

Check this page on a regular basis for the
latest news. All new writings will be on top.

Email me

- 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
" 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 ...

Back to current Hodgepodge page, click here



Texas' Fun 5's
Scratch Tickets

Fun 5's Scratch
Tickets Not Paying
Face Value of Winnings

See it for yourself. Includes
all details. Click here.

Fun 5's
Questions & Answers

Everything you have been
asking me is covered here!
Posted 9/21/14.
Click here.

Media Coverage - Fun 5's
This is NOT all of them!

ABC - KTRK TV Houston
NBC - KXAS - Dallas
Houston Chronicle
Dallas Morning News
Kens5 - San Antonio - TV.
Dallas Observer
Click 2 - Houston
Fox News
Fox 7 - Austin
Austin American

Good Morning America
(Can't find link)
Channel 11 TV -
Fort Worth - 10/21/14

Courthouse News

Houston Chronicle
Dallas Morning News,
Courthouse News,
Dallas Morning News,
Houston Chronicle,
4 Traders
Courthouse News
News Journal
WacoTrib (AP)


- Jilted Players -
Monopoly Millionaires Club

3 Separate Editorials -
Jan 5, 9, 14, 2015, Click here
NBC, Channel 5, DFW
- by Ken Kalthoff, click here
Past Monopoly Drawing
Results, Click here
Hoosier Lottery Losing Money
(So is Texas), Click here
Official Game Rule (As of
Oct 29, 2014)(word), click here
MMC Audience Selections
Procedures, click here (pdf)
Future participating
states - Click here (pdf)
Draw Sales by State,
Click here

Financial Re-cap of Draws,
Click here

(Watch here for additional
documents to be posted


FY14 Ends With
What Appears
To Be A Substantial
Loss In Revenue

... Sales way down from FY13 ...
<$106.5 M>;
Lotto Texas
<$11 M>;
Pick 3
<$14.7 M>;
Cash Five
<$3.7 M>;
2 Step
<$2.4 M>;
All or Nothing <$17.3 M>.
Two games increased
their sales ...
Mega Millions (+ $72M)
& Daily 4 (+ $8 M)
Scratch ticket sales to
be determined.
See the facts.
Posted 8/31/14.
Click here.

- Meet Kelly Cripe -
The Spokesperson
For the TX Lottery

She's the person who decided
I didn't need to receive public
information that I pass along
to you every day!
Originally Posted 5/30/12
- Click here -
My response to Cripes
Cease & Desist Letter

Posted 4/21/13,

Click here

We've never seen Cripe
on TV - See the "test"
interview she did prior
to being hired. (A wmv
file - should open in
Windows Media Player
Posted June 23, 2014
Click here

About Texas Triple
Chance Three
Separate Postings

With this letter, I've done
all I can do - Posted
1/30/14. Click here

Is this game a true
lottery game? Is it
legal? Posted
1/20/14, Click here
"Secretly" Proposed.
Details New Game.
Posted 1/7/14,
Click here

Unbelievable Duplicate
Quick Picks

Louisiana players buys 4
tickets, all tickets have
the same numbers.
Very sad. (Nov 7, 2013 -
Updated Nov 12, 2013)
Click here.

Did Gary Grief Lead
The Commissioners
Believe All or Nothing
was born in Texas?

And about that highly
publicized "liability"
Posted 6/8/13.
Click here

Houston Chronicle
Exposes Mr. Grief's
Contractions Regarding
All or Nothing

Here's the answers to all
your questions and the
REAL truth (6/5/13)
Click here

Will Texas Honor
The Rule & The Face
Value of My Scratch

This letter was submitted
to Gary Grief - Director
of the TLC. I'm asking
that my winning tickets
be paid - Unbelievable
story and only the tip
of the iceberg regarding
Texas scratch tickets.
After you read the letter,
tell me - do you think
it's a winning ticket?
Should they pay me?
Posted 12/10/12.
Click here

Texas Player Buys
7 Quick Picks And
Receives 7 Identical

An Unbelievable
Story - Posted 3/15/12,
Click here

Lottery Terminals
Err - Here is
Absolute Proof

Posted 7/12/07 -
Don't let this happen to
you. Check your own
tickets! Click here
Very Interesting.

Editorial & Opinions by Dawn Nettles


2/11/15 - Several topics to address today ... 1) Powerball proposed rule, sales and the $500 million jackpot ... 2) Ex-Lottery employee Keith Elkins becomes Spokesperson for Lt. Governor Dan Patrick ... 3) Monopoly Millionaires TV show - specifically, reneging on guaranteed prizes won ...

The Texas Lottery has balls ...

Powerball ...
As you've heard, the Powerball jackpot - as I write this - has been increased to a whopping $500 million. This jackpot represents the point players were trying to make regarding making many millionaires rather than one person to receive this much money. The lotteries designed Monopoly to "offer" this feature but it failed. It's too bad this jackpot in not $200 million then making 300 millionaires by conducting additional draws with no low tier prizes.

Tonight's Powerball drawing will make the 21st drawing in this roll. This is really bad. Let's compare previous jackpots to the number of draws required to reach that amount.

- Powerball -
A Comparison: Draws Per Roll Cycle To Advertised Jackpot Amounts

Date Jackpot Draws
in Roll
11/28/12 $587.5 M 16 Yes
5/18/13 $590M 14 Yes
8/7/13 $448M 13 Yes
9/8/13 $400M 12 Yes
2/19/14 $425M 16 Yes
2/11/15 $500M 21 ???

The final jackpot amount may have been a little
higher than what is shown here. The figures shown
was the advertised amount at the time.

What ya'll really need to see is what sales were on the final drawing
in each of these rolls. The increasing sales figures are unbelievable
- click here and scroll down to the win dates to see what I mean.

So that ya'll know, to fund the jackpot tonight, sales should be $175 million which means they will have only sold 87,500 tickets, meaning at least 90 million combinations are not being sold - In other words, in lottery language, coverage would be less than 50%.

The $175 million would give them excess funds of $4 million which is - historically - not enough for them. Therefore, I believe total sales will be $225 million with 112.5 million tickets being sold. This would give them an additional $20 million going for the next draw. If sales are this high, then at least 80 million combinations will not be sold. Most likely more because of the duplicate tickets sold.

By the way - I think you should know that I ask the Texas Lottery what their sales projections were for tonight's draw and what sales were at the time I wrote, BUT, they have not responded.

How they can get away with ignoring me completely is beyond my comprehension ... but they do and there is nothing I can do about it so I won't worry about it. I refuse to get an ulcer by worrying so I don't. I just roll with the flow!

Powerball's proposed rule change ...
I told ya'll about the rule change Jan 5th (posting below) and it was ripe for adoption during the Commission meeting held last week - Feb 5th. When the item came up to discuss, Mr. Grief asked that they pass on adopting the rule because MUSL was making more changes. Mr. Grief did not elaborate and the Commissioners conveniently did not ask any questions so I'm not sure what additional changes will be forthcoming. All we can do is HOPE they don't increase the odds of the game to reduce the number of winners.

I believe - after seeing 21 draws in this current Powerball roll - we don't need a harder game to win.

The new rule will not go in effect until July now.

If I was an executive at the Texas Lottery Commission ...
I might be worried that my actions might be catching up with me!!! <huge grin on this one>

Unless you are an old timer like me, you may not know who Keith Elkins is. Many years ago, Keith was the Communications Director (currently called the Media Director) at the Texas Lottery. In his day, he and I went round and round but no matter how he and I debated issues, I can say three very positive things about Keith.

1) He did speak to me - unlike Kelly Cripe (the current Director).

2) Keith was the very BEST media person they lottery has ever had. If one puts a camera on Keith - he's good!

For the record - previous directors - Steve Levine and Bobby Heith - were good on camera too but no one was as good as Keith. In all fairness, Keith was a TV reporter and was highly trained - that's why he was so good. As for how the current Media Director, Kelly Cripe, does on camera, well, we don't know because they apparently don't let her deal with the media by phone, on camera or in person. At least, I've never seen her on TV and I've never heard her voice on the radio so I don't know how she does.

3) Keith Elkins was always honest. He may not have told me what I wanted to know, but to the best of my knowledge, he never lied. He did anger me - but he never lied.

Anyway ... Keith's departure from the lottery was suspicious to me. You see, Mr. Grief had proposed the 5/44 & 1/44 Lotto Texas rule which was not wanted by anyone. Grief's greatest strength was his very strong media director to handle the press in a bad situation.

This was also at a time when Mr. Grief was firing so many employee's "at will" which - I'm proud to say - Mr. Grief can no longer do. The legislature removed that privilege from him.

To move on ... after Keith left so quickly and unexpectedly, it was "rumored" that Mr. Elkins "resigned" because he refused to lie to the media about the Texas Lottery having bought new balls and machines BEFORE the rule was ever proposed/adopted. Mr. Grief had been told to NEVER buy equipment unless a rule had been adopted and it was rumored that Keith called Grief's hand on this. It was well known that IF an employee was NOT a TEAM player, they would be fired but allowed to resign to save face.

The point to my telling Keith's story .... drum roll ...
Mr. Keith Elkins is the new spokesperson for Lt. Governor Dan Patrick.

Now, let me say that Keith Elkins is truly a professional - which translates into the fact that Keith does not bad mouth people ... BUT ... he does have inside information should anyone in the Legislature want to know what and how things are really done at the Texas Lottery. After all - the KEY employees remain in charge at the Texas Lottery.

Gawd what I'd give to be in Keith's shoes. Which is most likely why I'll never be there. <grin>This story should reinforce the old saying that "every dog has its day." Be careful how you treat people - it could reach up and bite you!

Which brings me to the latest rumor ... last Friday I heard that staff was very worried about the legislature this session. Gee, I can't imagine why - can you? <grin> By the way, I did request a bill tracking report and I received it yesterday. I was surprised to see what had been deleted, omitted from it or simply failed to include.

The Monopoly TV show ...
Many of you have asked if we will be able to watch the game show here in Texas. My guess is that it will not air in Texas because there are no Texas players participating in the show. This is not a definite - just a common sense answer. The show was originally due to air this past week-end but was postponed til March.

I have confirmed that the Texas Lottery reneged on what was suppose to be a "guaranteed" prize ... The Thursday, Dec 4, 2014 Texas Lottery Press Release said ......

Boy, the lottery entices you to spend your money then changes - AT WILL - what you thought you would receive IF you won. Shoot, they even put it in writing then backed out of it. I guess what we're reading here is not what it says! <huge grin> Unbelievable! But it sure sounds familar to us Fun 5 players and some Lotto Texas winners!

So that you know - at the end of December, the Texas Lottery quietly contacted the 18 players selected in the first Second Chance drawing (by phone) and told them they wouldn't be going to Las Vegas after all. Grief told the Commissioners last week that the players signed a release form and accepted $10,000 for the prize. However, not all players appear to view things the way Grief portrayed them. Interesting!

In my last posting, I told ya'll that there were so many commitments made regarding the Monopoly game so they [lotteries and vendors] had to act quickly ... well - here's just one of many examples ... Nevada's Office of Economic Development approved $2.5 million in incentives for Scientific Games to defray costs of building a 40,000-square-foot soundstage for a set for “Monopoly Millionaires Club,” a nationally broadcast television game show and to relocated their corporate headquarters from New York to Las Vegas. Click here for complete details.

Needless to say, that show must go on but there will be no Texas participants.

Last week, Grief told the Commissioners that Texas would not be a party lottery in any Monopoly game - whether it be an online game or a scratch ticket.

Fun 5's lawsuit - just an interesting observation to comment on ...
In the Dec and Jan Texas Lottery Commission meeting agenda - they list the G-Tech lawsuit in Executive session for them to discuss. See ...

Except Feb 5, 2015 Texas Lottery Agenda

What I'd like to know is ... how and why would they discuss this? But more importantly, why in Executive Session? If the Texas Lottery were being sued, I would understand it. But they aren't so they must be discussing here say or speculating. <grin> And how is it that they are allowed to discuss this issue behind closed doors?

On Feb 5, during the Commission meeting, Mr. Grief told the Commissioners how much money Texas saved by withdrawing from the Monopoly game yet they left the other states high and dry; Mr Grief told the Commissioners that MUSL had the agreement with Sci Games that might be in legal jeopardy but NOT Texas; and finally, Mr. Grief told the Commissioners that the lottery did get a release from from those players that didn't receive the prizes they won. Mr. Griefs remarks sounds to me like he's reassuring the Commissioners that there will be no legal repercussions from his many questionable actions.

Several people told me that they were told they could NOT go to Las Vegas and they did not think there was anything they could do about it. How very sad it is that lottery players feel this way and the lottery gets away with it. The Texas Lottery's words are getting cheaper by the day.

In conclusion ...
In my next posting, I will tell you about retailers taking advantage of the lotteries and about the MUSL employee caught winning millions ... Sound interesting? Also, coming ... I finally pulled my scratch ticket presentation together for lawyers who wanted information from me. I posted it on a special page for them and now I plan to edit it for the public to read. When I post it, you will no longer wonder what I mean when I say scratch tickets are sometimes "deceptive" and "trick" tickets that are sold to unsuspecting consumers. It was a lot of work for me but it needed to be done and I finally did it. At least the lawyers understood what I was trying to explain to them and they agreed with my scratch ticket names. That's all I really cared about.

1/23/15 - More on MONOPOLY ... what's new and an attempt to answer your questions ... Complete with the documents to support all.

First and most important - I want to thank those who have delivered information to me. Not only do I thank you, but I'm quite certain that all Texas Lottery players - my readers - thank you too. Once again, be assured and rest easy ... I have destroyed all that I received including documents, envelopes, disks & boxes.

Let's get started ...

If you will recall, I requested a copy of Gary Grief's interview from the Texas Lottery. This is the interview that disappeared after I posted a link to it in my Jan 5th posting (below). The Lottery replied to my Open Records requests. Here is what they said ...


"With reference to Item #1, the Texas Lottery Commission is unable to provide any responsive information for your request as we are not the originator of the video information requested. The video is the property of the La Fleurs/TLF Publications and is protected under copyright. As such, the Texas Lottery Commission does not possess the right to make copies. You may be able to request the information directly from La Fleurs/TLF Publications."


I called TLF Publications but they have not returned my call. Of course, I feel the TLC can easily obtain the right to release the interview and should have done so when I requested it. After all, Gary Grief granted the interview and it was done during business hours and it was used extensively to promote the MONOPOLY game. Texas appears to be a pretty valuable customer of LaFleurs Magazine - records show Texas has paid them $43,140 in the past 5 years.

LaFleurs TV pulled Grief's interview from the internet too. Hmmm ...

Maybe the interview was pulled because the game failed so badly that Mr. Grief's interview became an embarrassment to the entire industry. According to You Tube, Griefs interview only had 194 views. Maybe it increased to that when I posted the link and they didn't want people viewing it.

All I can do is speculate at this point and that's what I'm doing.

Rumors are running rampant ...
About bringing the Monopoly game back, the TV show and the prize monies being held by the lotteries. I think in light of all the new developments, they can't bring it back. Before Christmas, the talk/plan was to make rule changes and bring the game back as quickly as possible - late January.

The lotteries are obligated to run the MONOPOLY under the terms of their agreement with Scientific Games (SGI). To not play MONOPOLY would require a mutual agreement between the lotteries and SGI. (Links to these documents later in this writing)

The states are obligated to each other too - If a state is not able to to partake in the game, then they have to seek a variance from the Group for an alternate solution that substantially complies with the intent of the Group. So - by reason of deduction - either all parties will agree to dissolve the game or they are quickly trying to come up with a fix for the game.

Rule changes coming for MONOPOLY ... (If the game continues) ...
According to what I hear - the first change will be to remove any liability for the states - (hmm - imagine that - they shouldn't have designed a game with a liability to begin with - this is just like the colossal goof with the TX All or Nothing game - the liability was gigantic.)

Moving on, in layman terms, "liability" means there will be few - if any - guaranteed prizes when the game returns. They will pay prizes based on sales - called pari-mutuel payouts. This is actually the way it should be for all games.

They will lower the starting jackpot to a $5 million ANNUITY - maybe lower- (guess this means no cash option) and will most likely reduce the number of guaranteed $1 million winners when there IS a jackpot winner. The number of $1 million winners will increase each draw ONLY ... AS SUPPORTED BY SALES. Well, so much for creating a game that produces "lots of millionaires!" All that advertising material will be shot to hell on this one!

They want a fast, easy and cheap fix to the game .... with NO programming changes.

I think they are also considering switching to scratch tickets ...

Bottom line ...
The lotteries and Scientific Games have gotten themselves in a huge mess. They've all signed agreements with so many different entities - all because they foolishly believed players would spend $5 for an online lottery ticket with computerized draws and a complicated game to boot. They are thinking (wishfully) the upcoming TV show will be their survival - but it won't be. That's because they need too much in sales. This TV show is not going to entice the younger generation to spend their money - at least not as much as they need in sales. So that you know, the TV show was/is fun, entertaining and professional but that still won't entice lottery sales - in my opinion!

Monopoly has so many components that it only creates frustration and dissatisfaction among the players ... there's just no way for it to survive - in my opinion.

PLUS ... let's not forget - TX (and some other states) put the cherry on the cake by pissing off the few MONOPOLY players they had. There's no TRUST or CREDIBILITY left for the game and certainly none left for the TEXAS Lottery.

Players expect lotteries to adhere to consumer laws - Players foolishly thought lotteries told the truth when they promoted and advertised lottery games. Now proven to be false in TX. Players thought lotteries honored their written, plain spoken words - now players have seen that's not necessarily the case - especially in TX. What a shame and disgrace.

Integrity? There is none of that with the TX Lottery. From missing monies never accounted for or found ... keeping prize monies ... failing to catch fraudulent transactions ... altered reports ... staff testimony that is less than truthful ... non disclosure ... refusing to honor winning scratch tickets ... failing to honor game rules .... I could go on but I think you get the point.

It's been reported to me - though not confirmed - that 18 Texans drawn in the December Second Chance Monopoly drawing did not get their trips to Vegas either - I heard it was a last minute cancellation. No one from Texas got to participate in the TV game show that was taped Jan 9, 10, & 11th, 2015.

I asked the Texas Lottery to confirm this rumor but they have not responded - therefore - I can only conclude it must be true. I don't know how the TX Lottery can get away without explaining these things to the citizens of Texas.

After hearing this tidbit THREE times, I wondered IF maybe Texas had been expelled from the group. Boy, wouldn't that be something!

Spoiler alert & Texas screws their players ...
I heard (rumors) that there was one $1 million winner in one of the first shows taped then another $1 million winner in another of the 6 shows taped. Documents show the states projections only counted for a handful of people (forgot the actual number quoted - I think it was 6 or 7) to actually win $1 million dollars from the TV show each year. Supposedly there was two $100,000 winners and many won $10K to $20K. Plus members of the audience split half of what the one person from their group won. But not a Texan!

Guess we'll see how true these "rumors" are when the show airs. If by chance these rumors are true, then those 17 Texans (drawn in Dec drawing) who were paid $10,000 in exchange for the trip got screwed/shortchanged BIG TIME - all because Texas pulled out after fraudulently selling $5 tickets to unsuspecting consumers. The twelve 2nd chance winners from the Jan drawing were screwed too when they were paid $10,000 in lieu of the trip to Vegas. These "winners" will be plenty mad when they see the TV show they weren't allowed to be in.

I really want to know WHY our elected officials are permitting the behavior we're seeing from our state lottery.

By the way ... I think it's important to tell you that "rumors" I hear generally turn out to be true. We'll see if it holds true in this case too.

You've asked so many questions ...
since TX jilted their 2nd Chance Monopoly players - Quite frankly, I never once dreamed that TX would refuse to honor all obligations to players so I completely understand your anger. If I had invested in the way ya'll did - I'd want justice too.

It's important for you to know that many states honored their commitments to their players - a quote from the Arkansas Times said, "ASL will honor its commitment to those players who have entered their tickets to win a chance to appear on the game show." (Read the story, it's interesting.)

The best way I know to give ya'll answers is to give you the documents that legal folks would need that tells all - the Rules and the Agreements. NOTE: Some are DRAFT documents - don't worry, documents like these rarely change "significantly." All documents should be available to the public if requested. You should be able to obtain copies of the final rules and agreements from your state lottery if you want "final" copies.

The Consortium Agreement should be helpful in addressing your questions regarding taking legal action (#7) and the requirements for withdrawing from the Group such as Texas did - looks like Texas did not comply to the terms of the agreement - though I'm not certain due to the circumstances. DRAFT - NPG Consortium Agreement, pdf , click here

The game rule that the States Must Adhere (FYI - each state writes their rules based on the terms in this MONOPOLY rule) ... DRAFT July 2014 - Monopoly Rule (pdf), click here. Monopoly Rule after revisions as of 10/29/14, click here

I understand that some confidentiality should apply to certain aspects of all businesses, but not in the financial arena. Lotteries ARE state agencies and the People have every right to all Financial issues. In this agreement, read Article 9 - hardly complies with the concept of "Open Government" - License, Goods and Service Agreement - Monopoly Millionaires Club - DRAFT, Click here.

As part of the Licence, Goods and Service Agreement, Hasbro's Confirmation letter, click here.

The TV show has its own Rule(s) - Completely separate from the Monopoly rule - Could be DRAFT documents - All dated April 2014.

Overall Rule, click here
Rule: Advance to Boardwalk, click here
Rule: Community Chest, click here
Rule: Electric Company, click here
Rule: Get Out of Jail, click here
Rule: Go or No, click here
Rule: Hot Properties, click here
Rule: Monopoly Go, click here
Rule: No Vacancy, click here
Rule: Park It, click here
Rule: Ride the Rails, click here

By reviewing all these documents, you should have learned a lot. I hope you saw the enormous dollar value going to Hasbro & Sci Games by implementing this game. Speaking of making lots of money, while you have not been able to see Mr. Grief's LaFleurs TV interview, let me share just a short excerpt from testimony given during a commission meeting so you can see his enthusiasm regarding expected income from this game. This is the same enthusiasm shown in Grief's LaFleurs interview for their "internet TV."

Texas Lottery Commission Meeting
June 23, 2014 - Excerpt of Grief Testimony

Read transcript - Agenda Item II - Staff explains
Monopoly to the Commissioners, Click here

MR. GRIEF: Mr. Chairman, if I could interrupt and just make a couple of opening comments before Steve takes over.


MR. GRIEF: I think back to June of 2010, and I met in Chicago in that month four years ago with eight other lottery directors for the first discussion of many that followed involving our desire for a new national premium lottery game, one that could be launched on a national scale at a price point that would be greater than Mega Millions or Powerball.

At that time four years ago, we had some very simple goals in mind. We wanted a game that obviously would generate new incremental revenue for all of the lotteries that would be involved, we wanted a game that would help us acquire new players through true national marketing efforts, and we wanted to design a game that would be fun, one that would be exciting and would be something a little different than anything we had done before.

Since that first meeting several years ago, several of those lottery directors that I met with initially have left the industry, but our industry has never lost its vision and its focus on creating a national premium game. And I've mentioned this to you in numerous past Commission meetings about all the efforts that have gone into developing this game.

With Mega Millions filling the $1 price point for our national draw game portfolio and Powerball going strong at the $2 price point, we -- and I'm referring, when I say "we," to lottery directors across the country -- we've been focused these last four years on developing a new draw game that would fill the niche at the $5 draw game price point, similar to the portfolio approach that we used for our scratch games where we have price points that run the spectrum.

We've also had a desire to reach new players, and we think we can do that with the introduction of a national TV game show to go along with the new base draw game that the MONOPOLY® game provides.

The challenges in getting where we are today with the MONOPOLY® Millionaires' Club Game Rule in front of you for your deliberation have been substantial. Every lottery jurisdiction in the country is very unique and each jurisdiction has their own set of challenges and issues to overcome in bringing any new lottery product to market but especially bringing one that has to be delivered in a uniform manner across every jurisdiction.




After spending literally years working with our existing vendors to develop such a game, we finally determined that the best way to go about this and to keep us moving forward and to allow any and all vendors to submit their best ideas and products in a way that would be secure and confidential for their benefit was to use a formal procurement process. And we determined that MUSL, the Multi-State Lottery Association, would be the best vehicle for delivering that process to us.

So today we've come all the way to having Steve Saferin here with us. Steve is the president of Scientific Games Properties Group, and he's also their chief creative officer.

Those titles are great, but they don't do any justice to Steve's impact on the industry over the last almost 30 years. He's been one of the great leaders of our industry, and he's been a great partner, specifically to the Texas Lottery, from the role that he's played with MDI and subsequently with Scientific Games for as long as I can remember.

Steve is going to share with you in detail today all the nuances of this game. I've asked him to cover it in a thorough and a comprehensive manner, as I believe it's critically important that we be completely transparent on any new game that we're going to ask our players to be involved in.

I'll leave you with a couple of thoughts as I turn the presentation over to Steve.

The MONOPOLY® -- this MONOPOLY® Millionaires' game, if it's approved by every jurisdiction and gets launched as we expect, it will be the most entrepreneurial activity that the lottery industry has participated in in the history of the industry. I have no doubt about that.

And that approach fits very nicely with our mission statement here and your policy as a commission that we try to generate as much money for the Foundation School Fund as possible. And while the revenue that we anticipate this game to generate is going to be significant and very important, just as important, if not more so, will be the market penetration to potentially new players through the use of the national TV game show that Steve is going to speak about.

And not to be lost is the opportunity for all participating lotteries in this game to work together unshackled by either being a member of the Mega Millions or the Powerball groups, all focused on one mission, and that's bringing this national premium game to the forefront and generating revenue for all of our states. That I'm also excited about.

So with that, Steve, I'll turn the presentation over to you.

MR. SAFERIN: Thank you, Gary.



Read entire transcript.
Agenda Item II -
Staff explains Monopoly
to the Commissioners.
Very informative ...
Click here

Can you image, Grief actually thinks Texans can't wait to spend their hard earned dollars so the Texas Lottery can increase the amount of money going to the School Foundation Fund. Anybody who believes that players gamble so the money can go to schools is suffering from a disease called DENIAL. People gamble because they WANT to win more money than they spend. Gambling is addictive!

A Prediction ...
I'll bet Texas' losses generated from Monopoly and Fun 5's will really be paid from the monies intended for the School Fund thus the 2015 contributions will be disastrously low! Only time will tell.

More later ...

01/14/15 - About Monopoly's "3rd chance" drawing (the last chance to win $1 Million) ...

The Texas Lottery conducted their drawing yesterday for those lucky players to have their promised "3rd chance to become a millionaire" in Monopoly Millionaire - which was the trip to Las Vegas to be in a game show audience - however - the Texas Lottery took that chance away from players.

Instead the Texas Lottery will be issuing $10,000 checks to each player.

If you want to pursue this legally, don't cash your checks. If I were one of the twelve selected, I'd seek legal advice before accepting anythng. The Texas Lottery sold you a product under false pretenses - they told you you would have - 3 Ways To Win Millions or A Million - but they are failing to honor the printed words.

NBC - Channel 5 - Ken Kalthoff Reporter, DFW - did a great story on "jilting players" just last night. Click here to watch it.

For some unknown reason, they [the Texas Lottery] does not plan to post the names of the 12 names drawn.
So I will ...

- The Jilted Twelve -
Sipho Phillips - Pearland
Huong Nguyen - Houston
Martha Davila - Alvin
Mary Stallings - Bryan
Bob Johnson - Ft. Worth
Marvin Cotton Jr. - Dallas
Alejandra Sutton - Mansfield
Stephen Foster - Friendswood
Pauline Horstman - Houston
Brenda Smith - The Colony
Mary Bell - Godley
Morriss Samuel - Sachse

More to come ...

01-09-15 - About that missing video from my Jan 5, 2015 posting - the infamous Gary Grief interview regarding Monopoly Millionaire that was mysteriously pulled. This interview was given to Terri Markle, Publisher of LaFleur's Magazine in August 2014 in Austin. I saw it for the first time roughly 4 months ago - I believe I saw it on LaFleurs web site first. Then I viewed it later on You Tube. Over the months, I've watched it several times but on Jan 5th, I actually watched it 3 times in checking my links that DID work just fine.

.....TX Lottery Director Gary Grief

(See, the interview existed ... but if you click on these
links, you'll get a "sorry, video removed by user" message.
Needless to say, this is an excerpt from a search engine.

On January 6, the day after I posted a link to Grief's interview, it vanished and a link - "Texas Lottery Video's" - on LaFleur's website was disabled. Unbelievable.

(Excerpt from La Fleur's website ... Two comments ...
notice that TX is the only state
lottery with a link.
Also, FYI - the TX Lottery Videos
link was disabled.
Why would LaFleurs disable TX?
See for yourself,
click here then click on "Texas Lottery Videos"
so you can see that you get nothing! 3rd on in the list

Most publishers adhere to a code of ethics. IF we make a mistake, we correct it, explain it and apologize. We can't change facts nor can publishers change outcomes. When we do a story, we air or print what was said - we may edit the story but once its done, it doesn't get changed - it may be corrected, but not without noting the change. Also, when a reporter does a story, the person being interviewed has NO say in what is actually printed or aired on TV. In fact, they don't even allow you to see it until the story is run.

Grief's story was about a new lottery game - and LaFleur's (a trade publication) - was obviously assisting in promoting the game for the industry which it covers. It appears LaFleurs only pulled Grief's interview while leaving all the other video's intact regarding the Monopoly Millionaires game. Why would they do that?

Once publishers post or print a story, it generally becomes history - and you can't change or remove history. It may be archived, but one can generally still get to the story.

A bit of speculation too ... I have wondered if Griefs interview was pulled for legal reasons. Players were misled and there could legal ramifications for broken promises ... so to speak. I don't know this to be a fact, but it could be a logical explanation. But even if it was pulled for that reason - the interview could still be obtained. I will say Gary was convincing about the success of the new game - that's why I wanted you to see it!

An interesting tidbit too ... Under "About Us" on LaFleur's website, they write, "In 2013, La Fleur's TV (LTV) premiered, creating the industry's first, original content video channel for news and interviews featuring lottery executives from around the world." But they deleted Gary?????? WOW .... TX should feel insulted. <grin>

Creditability is the key to success in all businesses but for publishers, readers must trust the presented information and preferential treatment must not be given to anyone - public trust can not be bought - it's earned.

I posted on Jan 5th that other videos had been removed but it appears they were moved and I found them. You can still watch the presentations regarding Monopoly Millionaires. If you didn't watch these, you should.

- 3 Video's with New Addresses -
All Below Links worked on 1/9/15.

Directors Panel Discuss Monopoly Millionaire Club, click here
Terry Rich Explains Monopoly Millionaire Club, click here
Marketing Directors Discuss Monopoly Millionaire Club, click here

See more videos, click here

LaFleurs TV - Additional videos - You should watch them ...
Grief interview in Rome - World Lottery Association (WLA)
Convention, Click here scroll down to pick his interview
Monopoly Millionaires Times Square Launch Event, click here
Videos submitted in contest ... (LaFleurs TV) - Click here

Many of you have asked about Powerball's changes - especially about the starting jackot amount and how jackpots would roll. Unfortunately, I found that this is an unknown at this time. I think it's horrible that Texas proposes and adopts rules with knowing all the facts. I call this bad business myself.

Comments are always interesting to me ... regarding my comments on Jan 5th about the jackpot monies not won on Monopoly Millionaires where I said I can't get an answer from TX even though the MMC site said to ask our local lottery. Well one reader wrote the following comment about the prize moneis not paid and I want to share it with you ... He said in part ...

- Player Comment -
Info Unconfirmed by Me But Most Likely True!

I find that most state lotteries are alarmingly lacking transparency about what's happening. Only North Carolina's bothers to update the players and attempt to explain what is going on.

By the way, Pennsylvania drastically increased their payouts for the final draw. North Carolina and Florida are holding special bonus drawings next week for ticket-holders that entered web codes -- all to give back their states' share of the top prize pool that was returned to them after the final draw.

EVERY state in the top half of sales should do this, but they are the only three I know of that are. I called the Georgia Lottery's administrative offices to ask them about it and got a very nasty rep on the phone who stonewalled me and said the only answer I would get would be by submitting my question online. Yeah, right.

By my count, Georgia has about $335,000 that could have been distributed in a special draw. (Don't feel too bad ... Georgia stonewalled me too many years ago about the IRS 5752 forms. They are not a state agency - rather they are a corporation.)


In concluding today's posting ....
I have made open records request to obtain a copy of Mr. Grief's Monopoly Millionaire interview produced to promote a Multi State game - Monopoly Millionaires Club. When I receive a copy of it, I will post it for all to see. I'm pretty sure TX downloaded the video as they are "members" or "subscribers." If they didn't download a copy, they can easily otain it from LaFleurs. Also, for all I know, TX may have produced the video - it WAS done in Austin.

I have also requested financial advertising information (from their ad agencies) as well as any donations or contributions in the past 5 years to LaFleurs/TLF Publications.

So hang on - you'll eventually get to see our lottery directors interview regarding the failed game - Monopoly Millioaires Club.

By the way, they are taping the first TV show today in Las Vegas. It'll be interesting.

1/6/15 - I am attempting to find out how much Powerball jackpots will start at when the new rule takes effect and how they will roll. As soon as I can obtain an answer, I will post the info for you.

1/5/15- Today I'm addressing the failed Monopoly game, an idea for a game that could produce a "realistic" number of millionaires, Texas player demographics (we're smart now) and the proposed rule change for Powerball.

About Monopoly and Texas Director Gary Grief's interviews ...
I did attend the December 2014 Commission meeting in Austin. Initially there were going to propose a rule change for Monopoly but instead ... they posted an emergency notice on the agenda that they may shut the game down due to poor sales - which is what they did.

"Poor sales," jeez, what an understatement!! <grin> Things were so bad that the states bought insurance to cover their losses after the first and only win. As a taxpayer, I feel this was wasting taxpayer money - they should have shut the game down immediately.

See sales by state then review the re-cap of the one win to see just how bad things were.

Last week I asked the Texas Lottery about the TV show and the monies not paid out, they have yet to respond. But if you go to the MMC website, they tell you to ask your lottery for details regarding what's next. So much for that.

Anyway, I'm pretty sure you all know that Gary Grief, the Texas Lottery Executive Director, was instrumental in developing this game. One of the many stories published after all the other states decided to halt sales covered Mr. Griefs involvement and how the Texas Lottery joined by asking few - if any - questions. In some states, lawmakers could see through the "unknowns" and refused to allow their lottery to join. Of course, that's not the case in TX.

I think all Texas players should watch Mr. Grief's interview before the game launched - see how enthusiastic he was about this $5, computerized, high odds, complicated online game that they claim was embraced by players in their so-called "research."

Inserted 1/6/15 - Well, I guess you can forget watching Grief's interview - it has suddenly been pulled from the net. Did anyone download it? Please send it to me if you did. Obviously Mr. Grief didn't want anyone to see it.

Oh so interesting ... gotta watch Grief's Monopoly interview with LaFleurs, click here

Interesting interview - huh? That's our brilliant and dead wrong lottery director. Notice how Mr. Grief spoke of knowledgeable retailers, there were none that I found. Also, lottery players don't want to be on TV and there was no mass advertising for the game. And 600 millionaires for one draw ... that'll never happen unless they cheat. In my humble opinion, of course.

For the life of me, based on what they sold, I really don't know how they can pay Hasbro their fees much less pay the travel and expenses for those players selected to be on the TV show not to mention the necessary advertising.

I posted the following three videos regarding the new game before the game started. If you didn't watch them, you really should now. The reason is so that you can see how management thinks, acts, plans but mostly, how wrong they are and how greedy they are.

- 3 Video's (New Addresses) -
Directors Panel Discuss Monopoly Millionaire Club, click here
Terry Rich Explains Monopoly Millionaire Club, click here
Marketing Directors Discuss Monopoly Millionaire Club, click here

See more videos, click here

After watching these video's, you probably saw where they plan to offer a $10 online game next. Certainly won't be one I'll play! You'll also see where they are trying to reach (targeting) the younger folks. Little would they believe that this is a huge mistake. But they don't ask for my opinion.

Now they do plan to bring the game back - and that will be interesting to say the least.

Let's talk about the following statement and a way to create multiple million dollar winners on a lotto game ...
"Lotteries developed the Monopoly Millionaires Club game concept based on feedback from players across the nation who desired a game with the potential to make many people millionaires rather than just one person winning many millions
," said Alice Garland, executive director of the N.C. Education Lottery.

Yes, I would agree with this - we don't need one person winning $300 to $700 million jackpots - this money is generally destructive. But we also don't want $5 lottery tickets and computerized draws either. We want to SEE the draws, we want transparency.

So, the way I see it, there's only one way to create a "traditional" lottery game that could create a more realistic number of millionaires.

Part of the concept I'm posting here was an idea that I gave to another lottery many years ago. They took no action - in fact, they didn't think it would work for its "intended" goal/purpose at that time. As I look at things today, I disagree - to me, my theory has been proven indirectly. Anyway, I did request that if they used my idea, I hoped they would pay me something for the concept.

Here's how I think they can have a jackpot game plus $1 million winners - start a new game - do away with all low tier prizes - then divide the monies allocated for low tier prizes into $1 million prizes. We wouldn't have to wait for a jackpot to be won, they could pay the 5 of 6 winners with each draw and carry over money when there are no winners - conceivably, they could even increase the $1 million prizes.

Of the 50% of sales going to players in way of prizes - they should apply 40% to the jackpot and 60% to the $1 million prizes. The jackpot may grow a little bit slower depending on sales - but it would surely increase. Thus, the theory that "sales are jackpots driven" would come into play again. They could also cap the jackpot at $200 million or so.

Most important aspect, they must change the numbers in the games from 47 to 99 instead of 1 to 50. This concept would appeal to the Baby Boomers - we could finally play our favorite years. It would also be of the utmost importance to keep the odds low - no bonus ball game - they must create winners to entice play and spending.

They could name the game the "Baby Boomers Lottery."

About right now they [the lotteries] are scratching their heads thinking I'm crazier than hell. What they don't understand is that players hate those lousy low tier prizes and many people have quit playing because they are insulted by the amounts. So, I say, go all or nothing! (Sound familiar?)

As far as all this goes, truth is players would be happy with a quarter million or half million second place prize. Players spend their money in hopes of winning something BIG - not the dollar or $5 foolishly offered.

But the lotteries don't know any better because they are NOT players. They have a one track mind on the low tier prizes - and that is to boast about how many winners they have. They "think" advertising the number of winners helps them but the truth is, it doesn't. Players don't care - players only care about what they themselves won.

All lotteries have to do is look at the Pick3 game and a raffle game to believe that the low tier prizes are not necessary to offer on ALL games. Give us fair odds at winning 5 of 6 on a "lotto" type game and a $1 million prize and the players will go banana's in buying tickets. And the jackpot prize would be real BONUS to win!

No lottery in the world has tried this concept .... If designed correctly, affordable and FAIRLY, it'll work. I predict the lotteries would get the rolls they want and if matrix is FAIR, they'll get those high sales again like the olden days.

Winners always give the money back - thus creating an increase in sales.

During the last commission meeting,
the commissioners discussed a better way of obtaining demographic data. As I've said before, someone needs to get the real facts to report in their demographic reports ...

The lottery has the PERFECT outlet but I don't think they really want to know the truth or they'd take advantage of it. You see, they could have each player who goes to a claim center complete a questionnaire.

The questionnaire should be sealed after it's completed - by the player - in an envelope and mailed to a 3rd party by the claim center. Under no circumstances should lottery personnel be allowed to review the document after the player has completed it.

Did you know that it was reported that players spend an average of $49 per month playing the games. We all know that's a bunch of baloney. This figure is absurd given the number of daily and weekly draws. I think they are claiming more people play than what really plays - it is a well known fact that the same people play consistently.

Another thing reported .... players have higher levels of education ...

For us Fun 5 players ... this is fantastic news. They've officially been told that we're smart! I just wonder why the lottery sent out so many letters telling us the Fun 5's tickets said something that they didn't say! <grin>

Commissioner Krause wrote an editorial ...
Titled "Nobody Makes Us Play the Lottery" that appeared in the Ft. Worth Star Telegram - in part, he said,

"However, some individuals believe that there is a
correlation between lottery play and income and
that less income equates to disproportionate play.

Additionally, there are critics with self-serving
agendas who provide false information to the public.

Lottery players have the intelligence and judgment
to make good choices about spending their
entertainment dollars, whether on Netflix, a Friday
night football game or lottery scratch-off games.

I am always gratified by the results of these annual
studies, which reaffirm my belief that Texans are
smart players and use good judgment — they slow
down or stop when times are tough and play when
they can afford it in good times."

To read the entire story, click here

One comment regarding Krauses statement ... "Additionally, there are critics with self-serving
agendas who provide false information to the public"
Whoever provides "false information" could be held liable - this is why I tell the truth. Opinions are NOT considered "false information." I don't really think Krause is referring to me with his statement, but just in case I'll address it.

Powerball proposing changes to their game ...
The changes are tentatively scheduled to take place in April 2015. In Texas, they've proposed a new rule and we are in the comment period. There will be a comment hearing on Jan 14, 2015 and the comment period ends Jan 26, 2015. The Commissioners will adopt this conflicting and poorly written rule on Feb 5th.

It is my opinion that it would be a waste of time to comment - pro or con- as the Texas Lottery will move forward no matter what you think.

The specific changes ...
In a nutshell, they are increasing the odds (matrix) & changing the prize amounts. PowerPlay - the multiplier feature - will be automatically included in your $2 ticket.

There's two significant changes ... one is they are increasing the odds to a whopping 258-million-to-one - UP from one-in-175,223,510.

The other change ... now for that extra dollar, they will be offering an add-on game called "Power Plus." To try to explain it easily ... they will draw the Powerball winning numbers; then they'll draw a letter to determine the Power Play multiplier that is automatically included in your $2 purchase; then they'll draw a second set of winning numbers specifically for those who purchased the PowerPlus add on.

Players can win both draws with either set of numbers.

Power Plus is truly an independent game with its own prize pool, it's own prize amounts and its own $10 million jackpot. The Power Plus jackpot is pari-mutuel and it won't roll. But it is important for you to know that it is the same matrix as the new Powerball and the odds are an astromical 258-million-to-one.

The new Powerball rule Texas has written and proposed is the most poorly written and conflicting rule I have ever seen. For those of you who actually read it and commented to me, well, I agree with what ya'll have said. It is extremely difficult to understand and interpret and it lacks pertinent information.

The rule does say that the Powerball and PowerPlus are "two distinctly different games" but no where did I read that they will have a "second drawing" nor did I see a jackpot amount for Power Plus. Perhaps I've overlooked these things in which case I sure hope someone will show me where it is in the rule.

Read the proposed Powerball rule, click here

Language Deceiving ... Page 1, last paragraph, states that the "overall" odds are "slightly improved." While this may be correct because they lowered the number of bonus numbers from 35 to 32 numbers, but overall I'd say this statement is deceiving as hell. For a game to go from 175.2 million total combinations to a grand total of 258 million combinations is hardly considered "slightly improved odds" - in my humble opinion, of course. The only odds improved would be for matching 0 + 1 - Gee, how exciting that would be to win. <a sarcastic remark>

This is much like the Texas lottery currently advertising the number of All or Nothing winners - clearly not a true figure as they are including the "break-even" tickets in their advertising. I complained to no avail. They are still falsely advertising this figure.

The reason for the changes to Powerball
Because they say it was won too often so they can't get that huge jackpot to entice sales. I disagree. I think the reason they can't get the large jackpots is because players oppose the $2 costs. Sales are down and so are the number of tickets sold. They want to make real sure you don't win this game.

While I am opposed to paying $2 or $3 dollars for a lottery ticket, I will say they have at least added more value to offset the costs. However, the odds are so high, that it decreases the value for me personally. It will be interesting to see how this goes. I still believe people oppose the cost but that remains to be seen. If this game doesn't go, then they'll know to reduce the costs and the odds!

Now here's what you can look forward to when they change the game.

Basic Facts
Poweball's April 2015 Rule Change

Costs: $2 per ticket

"PowerPlay" will be included in your two dollar purchase.

New add-on feature - called Power Plus - can be
purchased for an extra dollar ($1) making the total cost $3.
It has its own prize amounts and its own drawing.

New Matrix: 5/66 and 1/32
(was 5/59 and 1/35)

The letters "P" "O" "W" "E" "R" will appear on all tickets.
Under each letter, a multiplier number will appear.
They'll "randomly" draw a letter so the multiplier
number found below the letter on your ticket
will be your multiplier number.

The numbers found under each letter CAN
vary from ticket to ticket.

The multipliers range from 2x, 3x, 4x, 5x, or 10x.
(x = times)

Annual Pay - 30 year pay

Due to the huge matrix change, there will be
fewer winners in all prize categories EXCEPT the 0+1.

New Prize Chart For A $2 Powerball Ticket
Match Base
Allocated From
Prize Pool To Fund
(50% of Sales)
Odds of
* 5+1 Pari-Mutuel
None/N/A 61.4514% 1-in-285,981,696
* 5+0 $1,000,000 None/N/A 10.8398% 1-in-9,225,216
4+1 $10,000 $20K to $100K 2.8714% 1-in-937,644
4+0 $100 $200 to $1000 0.8901% 1-in-30,246
3+1 $100 $200 to $1000 1.7228% 1-in-15,627
3+0 $7 $14 to $70 3.7385% 1-in-504
2+1 $7 $14 to $70 2.3717% 1-in-794
1+1 $2 $4 to $20 4.9129% 1-in-109
0+1 $2 $4 to $20 11.2014% 1-in-48

Prize Chart For A $3 "PowerPlus" Ticket

Match Base
Odds Allocated From
Prize Pool
of Sales)
* 5+1 Pari-Mutuel
1-in-285,981,696 6.9873%
* 5+0 $500,000 $500,000 1-in-9,225,216 10.8304%
4+1 $15,000 $30K to $150K 1-in-937,644 8.6066%
4+0 $150 $300 to $1500 1-in-30,246 2.6681%
3+1 $150 $300 to $1500 1-in-15,627 5.1639%
3+0 $10 $20 to $100 1-in-504 10.6722%
2+1 $10 $20 to $100 1-in-794 6.7705%
1+1 $3 $6 to $30 1-in-109 14.7259%
0+1 $3 $6 to $30 1-in-48 33.5751
* Prize NOT multiplied

- Noteworthy -

In the Texas rule, I cannot find where it says
the PowerPlus jackpot will be $10 million. It
only says it's a pari-mutuel prize.


That's all for now. I'll have more for you in the coming days. Will also try to post an update to the Fun 5's ticket situation. For the many folks calling and wanting in on the lawsuit, yes, you can still be a party. Information can be found here for contacting the attorney, read Dec 9th entry.

PS - I'd love to hear your comments. Email me - OK??


Back to current Hodgepodge page, click here here


Just point and click on the story you want to read

Just point and click

The Lotto Report
Dawn Nettles
P. O. Box 495033
Garland, Texas 75049-5033
(972) 686-0660
(972) 681-1048 Fax

Email me