Lottery may dump Illinois unless the state agrees a budget

CHICAGO — The multi-state lottery association overseeing Powerball and Mega Millions games will dump Illinois by the end of June if the state doesn’t end its budget impasse.

Illinois Lottery Acting Director Greg Smith said Thursday that the lack of a budget will result in players being “denied the opportunity” to participate in popular games. The Chicago Sun-Times first reported the news.

The budget stalemate could enter a third year if lawmakers don’t reach agreement by July 1. Republican Gov. Bruce Rauner and Democrats controlling the Legislature have been deadlocked since 2015.

Rauner Thursday called for a special legislative session beginning June 21 in the hope of ending the budget crisis that has plagued the state since 2015.

The Sun-Times says Illinois reported $99 million in Mega Millions sales and $208 million in Powerball sales in 2016. It’s unclear how much Illinois received.

The games are offered in 44 states.

The Multi-State Lottery Association didn’t immediately return messages.

–Associated Press

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