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No takers so far on Gov. Gregoire’s lottery bid plan

Post by Jordan Schrader / The News Tribune on Jan. 18, 2012 at 8:30 am |
January 17, 2012 4:50 pm

Most of Gov. Chris Gregoire‘s ambitious legislative agenda has been turned into legislation. She found sponsors for bills to recognize same-sex marriage (a whopping 73 sponsors), take over business tax collections from cities (with Gig Harbor’s Sen. Derek Kilmer taking the lead) and retool teacher evaluations.

But there’s no bill yet for her plan to seek bids from private companies wanting to take over Washington’s Lottery.

The proposed bill was turned over to House Speaker Frank Chopp and Senate Majority Leader Lisa Brown, but no one in their majority Democratic caucuses has offered to sponsor it. The governor’s office is still talking to Brown and Chopp.

“They’ve opined that’s going to be a tough sell,” Jim Justin, Gregoire’s legislative director, acknowledged Tuesday.

“We haven’t been able to understand at this point in time if that’s going to produce a savings,” Brown said last week.

The governor’s office says that’s exactly what the request for bids would aim to find out. Justin noted that the governor’s budget office recently rejected the bids it requested for a private takeover of the state’s liquor warehouse.

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