Lance Russell proposing bill to re-direct lottery revenues to teacher pay

From today’s KCCR, District 30 State Rep Lance Russell is planning to propose a measure to re-direct Video Lottery revenues to teacher pay, noting that he does not believe new taxes are needed:

lance-russellDistrict 30 South Dakota Representative Lance Russell of Hot Springs is bringing forth a bill that would dedicate revenue from video lottery for the purpose of supplementing teacher salaries in the state and establishing a teacher salary enhancement fund.

Russell says a tax increase for South Dakotans is unjustified…

Russell says that the state can come up with the 75 million dollar increase in teacher pay without raising taxes…

Russell adds that re-allocating lottery funds is an appropriate way to fund education…


Read (and listen) to it all here.

12 Replies to “Lance Russell proposing bill to re-direct lottery revenues to teacher pay”

  1. springer

    Where exactly do the lottery funds go now? I would like to see an exact breakdown by percentages and amounts. And what will be the ramifications tax-wise if those funds are all redirected to teacher pay? Will it raise other taxes?

  2. Anonymous

    When the video lottery bill passed in 1989 there were discussions with the education community relating to the revenues derived, they refused the offer.

  3. anon

    If I were Rep. Russell, I’d be looking for better ways to spend my time than serve in the legislature. Reviewing the state legislative website shows he’s sponsored some two dozen bills over the last four years and not passed one. In fact, almost every bill went down unanimously in committee. To be effective not only requires good ideas, but the ability to work with other people. Good for Rep. Russell for attempting to contribute “something” to the discussion on teacher pay. Unfortunately good legislation is not passed by spitting in the wind.

  4. springer

    I went to the video lottery page and came away confused, so I called them, and still am not completely clear. Half of the video lottery money is kept by the establishment housing the machine, the other half (minus 0.5% for operating expenses) goes into the state general fund.

    Apparently for years that money has been specifically designated for property tax reduction, but as of 7-1-15 that property tax reduction fund no longer exists and the money will go straight into the state general fund and be distributed as the governor and the legislature deem. So my question, if funds will no longer be directed toward property tax reduction, will that mean that my taxes will rise on my property? If so, the proposal of Russell’s that no new taxes are needed is completely false – my raised property taxes will be the new taxes he so conveniently claims won’t exist.

    This is a link to the video lottery explanation page.

  5. Anon1

    You’ve given both Howie and Russell space here on the same day?!?! Gotta be something better to write about.

    What’s Lance going to do when video lottery continues to decline?

  6. Charlie Hoffman

    Video Lottery money was used as a force to thwart a rising anti-property tax revolt pushing an income tax during the second Janklow administration. If in fact those dollars are being redistributed elsewhere and property taxes expected to once again rise to the occasion, the income tax issue will again become relevant. As we see today in South Dakota’s only true property income tax; as income drops and taxes maintain high levels the only losers are property owners. And for the record if an expected profit on an acre of land based on soil type and a seven year average price level determining assessed valuation and ultimately taxable value isn’t an income tax someone please explain to me what it is.

  7. Anonymous

    The Governor proposed and signed the repeal of the property tax reduction fund last year. Russell opposed it on the floor of the House. Earmarking $75 million of the video lottery for is simply fulfilling the original promise. It also prevents the “Republicans” in Pierre from using the remainder of the $200 plus million a one cent sales tax will raise for the purpose growing state government and rewarding cronies.

    1. Anonymous

      Pray tell, what exactly was the original “promise” when video lottery was passed in 1989? And don’t tell me to fund education because that is wrong.


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