Director's Letter

Statewide Agency Suspended Lottery Operations

June 26, 2017

Dear Retailer:

In the event the state Legislature fails to adopt a state operating budget by June 30, 2017, state departments, by necessity, are required to suspend operations.  We would like to provide you with as much information as possible to help minimize the disruption of your business if this occurs.

With our players’ best interest in mind, Washington’s Lottery has put a contingency plan in place.  Advance Play is already being reduced and will not be available for any draw scheduled on or after July 1, 2017.  Additionally, sales for all of our draw games will be unavailable after the final draw break, per the schedule below.

Game Final Sales
Powerball June 28, 2017, 6:45pm
Mega Millions June 30, 2017, 7:45pm
Lotto June 28, 2017, 7:45pm
Hit 5  June 28, 2017, 7:45pm
Match 4 June 30, 2017, 7:45pm
Daily Keno June 30, 2017, 7:45pm
Daily Game June 30, 2017, 7:45pm

It is our hope that the state government reaches a budget agreement.  However, here are our expectations if a suspended operations occurs:

  • During a government suspended operations period, the gaming system will be disabled and no drawings will be conducted.  Retailers will be prohibited from selling or redeeming any Lottery tickets (Scratch or Draw) or performing any other transactions on the gaming system, until further notice.
  • Keep all tickets and other Lottery property safe and secure.  Most Scratch ticket deliveries will end on June 30, however, if an order is delivered after that date, secure it with the rest of your tickets.
  • All Lottery offices will be closed as of July 1, 2017.  No Lottery staff will be working to handle phone calls from retailers or to provide contact through our website or mail during the suspended operations period.
  • In-store Lottery machines will be inoperable.  However, IGT (formerly GTECH) staff will still be working; maintenance may happen at your location.  Call the IGT hotline at 1-888-810-4357 if:
    • You sell your store during this period (keep all of your tickets),
    • You have a loss or theft of tickets, or
    • You experience Lottery equipment issues or concerns.
  • Please instruct any players that have a winning ticket to:
    • Immediately sign the back of the ticket, and
    • Place the ticket in a secure location.
  • A bank account sweep will occur as regularly scheduled on June 27, 2017.  Sweeps will not occur while Lottery operations are suspended.  EFT sweeps will resume on the following Tuesday after Washington’s Lottery resumes business. 

Please call your District Sales Representative prior to July 1, 2017 for any questions you might have, or visit walottery.com/Licensing/Letter.aspx.  We will update you as more information is available. Thank you for your patience and understanding.

 

Sincerely,

Harold W. Hanson
Director

 

Retailer Questions

Why is the Lottery suspending operations?

  • The Legislature and Governor have not enacted a state general fund budget for the two year period beginning July 1, 2017. Without a budget, the Lottery lacks legal authority to continue operations.

Should we turn off our lottery equipment?

  • No, the Lottery terminal (GT1200), and Gemini Touch should be left powered on. This will allow the monitor to run with our suspended operations message, assisting them with explaining to consumers why they cannot sell lottery products.

If the units are powered up, will we be able to sell?

  • No, the vending machines will not accept cash as the bill acceptor will be disabled by IGT. The Lottery Terminal will not allow you to sign on.

What happens to the digital jackpot signs? 

  • They will continue to display jackpot information as long as the equipment is powered on.

Will we be able to get reports?

  • You will have access to reports on 6/30/17 only. After that you cannot sign on.

Will I be charged the weekly admin fee if there is a suspension of operations?

  • No, you will not be charged for any full or partial week that the Lottery is not in operation.

Will my EFT sweep continue?

  • A bank account sweep will occur as regularly scheduled on June 27, 2017. 
  • As of July 1, 2017, no one will be working at the Lottery to send sweep information to the bank until we return to operations, thus no sweeps will occur during suspension of operations.

When will the Lottery resume EFT sweeps?   

  • Retailer accounts will be swept on the following Tuesday after Washington’s Lottery resumes business.  

When the State re-opens, will we be able to sell, etc.?   

  • Yes.