Oversight panel advises cut in lottery scholarships

Posted: December 18, 2012 at 12:22 p.m.

— A legislative panel is recommending cuts in the level of lottery funded-scholarships.

The Legislative Lottery Oversight Committee on Tuesday voted to recommend trimming scholarship awards to $3,300 for university students and $1,650 for community college students.

If approved in the coming session, the new amounts would take hold in the 2013-2014 school year. Currently, lottery scholarship recipients get $4,500 or $2,250.

Legislators say the popularity of the scholarships and reduced revenue make the cuts necessary.

The lottery was approved by Arkansas voters in 2008 and sales began in September 2009. Lottery tickets are sold at about 1,900 businesses and are available in all 75 Arkansas counties.

Lottery officials said earlier this month that it’s awarded $300 million in scholarship money since its inception.

Read tomorrow's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.