Posted: Saturday, August 14, 2010
Revised: Sunday, Aug 29, 2010 - Added Update story
Revised: Monday, Aug 30, 2010 -
Posted actual figures for Lotto Texas win on 8/31/10
Update To My LotteryPost Story
LotteryPost Re-Wrote The Original Story They Had Posted Titled ...
"2 quick Lotto Texas winners put state in bind"
Did lotterypost.com get a warning letter from the Dallas Morning News?
I'll bet they did otherwise Todd (lotterypost) wouldn't have re-written the story!
Included in this update are the reasons for the big fuss about the TLC being
short to fund Lotto Texas wins ... 3 of them now. July 31, 2010; Aug 11, 2010 and
Aug 28, 2010. After reviewing the facts and "budgets," YOU decide if it is a
"big deal" for Texas to overpay jackpot winners by <$5.89 million> in 4 short weeks.
lotterypost.com would have you believe it's not a big deal and
that I don't know what I'm talking about ... So again I'll say, you decide.
Update to Aug 14, 2010 posting that can be found below this posting
On Friday, August 13, the Dallas Morning News ran a story regarding two Lotto Texas jackpot wins - in just 10 days - where the state was short to fund by $3.4 million.
Lotterypost - Todd Northrop - took the copyrighted Dallas Morning News story and posted it on his web site but he changed it. Obviously, he didn't want his visitors to read what had actually been written about me - rather, he wanted to instill his own opinions.
I don't really know what his motives are - I have my suspicions but at this point, that's about all it is - suspicions.
I do intend to pursue this issue. It will take time to fully investigate but I'm on it. Anyway ...
On Aug 17, I saw that Todd had re-written the story, removed the Dallas Morning News credit line but kept the headline and kept quotes that he obviously did not obtain. I can say this because there's a quote from me and I did not speak to him to give him the quote!
Additionally, Todd added this statement ... "Although Nettles tries to make a case that the Lotto Texas jackpot calculation takes money away from revenue already earned, her conclusion is seemingly unsupported by revenue figures."
Well, it doesn't take an idiot to figure out that if sales don't support a win, a lottery would have to take funds from somewhere to pay the win. Needless to say, this reduces profits. The Texas Lottery will tell you that it is their duty to MAKE money for the state.
If Todd (lotterypost) had posted the stories printed in the Houston Chronicle and San Antonio Express News from the week before, then you'd have read where members of the Texas Legislature are upset about this. As they should be.
Lotto Texas sales are not down because of Mega Millions or Powerball. Sales are down because the Texas Lottery would not give players the game they wanted to play - pick 6 of 50. Players quit and/or reduced their spending back in July 2000 - the first time the TLC changed the Lotto Texas game.
Because of Todd's additional comment and because I don't want players misled, I'm going to show you exactly how the dollars are suppose to be spent as per the rule. Hopefully, everyone will be able to understand - BUT- you MUST understand ONE thing first. And that is ...
Each game is a "separate" business. Each game has its own earnings
Now that you understand this, let me show you the Lotto Texas "budget,"
Now lets look at the July 31, 2010 $21 Million Win
Lotto Texas was won again on Aug 28, 2010 and the TLC is
Contrary to what you may read at lotterypost concerning the plentiful monies - the TLC is suppose to live within its budget. They have expenses and obligations from total sales for each game. The state can not afford these losses. But more importantly, there should never be a "loss."
While lottery players may LOVE being overpaid by the state, it is not right nor is it good business. There is nothing wrong with the state seeing 50% of sales and they SHOULD see their share of sales. It is my humble opinion that if they are not returning at least 50% of sales for each game, then they are srewing the people. All they have to do is pay "pari-mutuel" prizes which means - divide a set percentage of sales for each prize level and pay the winners accordingly.
Between 1992 and 2006 (I could be wrong on the end date) - Lotto Texas players did not see 50% or 55% of sales like the TLC led you to believe. I fought this deception and was finally successful - they no no longer hold 2% in reserve for Lotto Texas.
The reason players didn't see their "quoted" share of sales is because the TLC would withhold 2% from the players share of sales just in case it was needed to fund the $3 and $5 guaranteed prizes. At one point, they had so much in reserve that the legislature made them transfer funds into the General Revenue fund.
Having said this - let me clarify one thing for the record. Because the TLC was "guaranteeing" jackpots, they were short to fund many wins by over $70 million dollars. They used the 2% (reserve money) for those wins - again - the TLC did NOT have to do this because the rule at that time stated it was a "jackpot based on sales" meaning a winner was only due the amount of money that was set aside (allocated) for his win. But I suppose one could say that they had to "honor" the amount advertised.
After changes were made allowing the TLC to guarantee the advertised amount, they overpaid winners by another $30 million. All in all, the TLC overpaid Lotto Texas jackpot winners by $100 million before 2006.
I was present when members of the House Licensing and Administration learned of this and I can tell you, they were sick. I have a lot of information about these overpayments posted on my website.
FYI - The TLC just changed the Mega Millions rule. In case you didn't know it, Mega Millions jackpots will no longer be "guaranteed" - the winner will receive his percentage of sales and at that, he won't receive it all because they are "rounding down" to even millions. This usually leaves hundreds of thousands of dollars in the lottery's bank account!
Why Todd - who is supposedly a private lottery playing citizen who maintains a very elaborate, successful lottery website - would allow his visitors to be led astray regarding TEXAS tax-payer money is beyond me. His statement, "although Nettles tries to make a case that the Lotto Texas jackpot calculation takes money away from revenue already earned, her conclusion is seemingly unsupported by revenue figures" shows his ignorance. The Texas Lottery is here to make money, not foolishly throw away profits from other games. And if the revenue is coming from their operating budget, then they clearly have too much money and can afford to reduce their allocation from sales - give more to the schools.
It is also beyond me that Todd (lotterypost) offers links to purchase lottery tickets on line for $2 each when he knows full well that should you win and the lottery finds out how you purchased your ticket and that you paid $2 for it, then they won't pay you your prize. Your prize money will go into the unclaimed prize fund!
Why would someone who is a "fellow player" put you at risk of not collecting your winnings?
In case you didn't know this, it was alleged by the NJ Consumer Affairs Division that Todd had violated the NJ Consumer Fraud Act. I believe he agreed to pay $35K but did not admit guilt. Complete details can be obtained by reading this. (pdf) This is an OFFICIAL document that was filed on June 23, 2004 in New Jersey.
I wonder, how much money does Todd make from the sale of online, illegally purchased lottery tickets? Did the NJ AG not make it clear to him that he could not do this when they went after him in 2004? Of course, the link to purchase US lottery tickets is registered to someone overseas. Maybe this makes it legal.
It is also beyond me that Todd Northrop purchased "megaplier.com" on Oct 16, 2003 (late night) or Oct 17, 2003 (early morning) which was the very day the TLC signed the agreement to join Mega Millions and offer Megaplier. How on earth did Todd Northrop - a private, lottery playing citizen from New Jersey - have the insight to buy this domain name before the Texas Lottery ever made it public?
Equally important, why is the TLC after my megaplier.org domain name and not after Todd's megaplier.com name? I bought megaplier.org on March 25, 2004 after I realized the TLC did not want it because they had not purchased it nor had they purchased megaplier.net. Commissioner Clowe instructed staff to purchase "whatever domain names" the TLC needed for Mega Millions in Sept or Oct 2003. Yet they didn't buy the names - a clear indication to me that they didn't want them - but now they do - not Todd's - just mine.
When I discovered the name "meagplier" was already in use by Todd Northrop prior to the TLC's filing for a mark on the name - according to the paperwork I have from the US Trademark Office - I bought it to show profit loss on the game - I honestly believed the TLC had no interest in the domain name. Now, 6 years later, the TLC is trying to take it away from me claiming I bought it in "bad faith" and am making a profit from the name. Not so folks!
The truth is, they don't want me giving ya'll public financial data on megaplier and are trying to get it off the net. Enough of this - I didn't mean to get carried away.
I'll say one thing about Mr. Northrop, he sure is FAST. Did you know he can post drawing results from 44 state lotteries in a matter of minutes. Gawd, it takes me 2 to 5 minutes to post TX games and I'm usually the first one up! While he denies having any connection to any state lottery, one sure has to wonder about this since he can post so many drawing results in such a short length of time. Shoot, how does he get the info so fast?
Not only does he pull off this miracle, but he displays all of Texas' games logo's on his drawing results page. WOW - The Texas Lottery doesn't allow anyone to do this. But they do at lotterypost.com. Why is this?
I think I have all of Todds emails to me and someday, for grins, I'll share them with you. He hasn't liked me from day one and it is very obvious. Maybe this is why the TLC allows him to show their copyrighted logo's!
One more thing - for those of you who have written me with regards to the negative postings at lotterypost about me, please understand, I can not control what is written about me. It appears lotterypost is the ONLY media where you will read negative things about me or my work. But, for those of you who have asked that I stand up and defend myself, well, here it is! I realize he won't let you post a defense of me so this is the best I can do.
I'm not trying to start a cyber war - I just want ya'll to be aware that the advice you may get at lotterypost may not be the best advice nor the most factual. Especially when it comes to taxpayer MONEY and the altering of copyrighted stories. Now I can only wonder how many other stories he has "altered."
Related Links For Tracking Lotto Texas Money
LotteryPost.com GUILTY of Misleading Its Readers
They took a Dallas Morning News Copyrighted Story,
changed it and posted it ... Shame, shame ...
They want you to believe that the way they presented the story
is how it appeared in the paper ... They just lost creditability...
The Story As It Appeared in the
Dallas Morning News
Here is the copyrighted story as it actually appeared in the Dallas Morning News ...
2 quick Lotto Texas winners put state in bind
12:00 AM CDT on Friday, August 13, 2010
Click here to see the story as it appeared in Dallas Morning News
AUSTIN The luck of lottery winners is picking up. For the state, not so much: It has taken a $3.4 million hit in just the past 10 days.
Since July 31, someone has correctly picked the six Lotto Texas numbers twice, but the state sold an insufficient number of tickets to fully cover the advertised prize.
Bobby Heith, a spokesman for the Texas Lottery Commission, said the state account holding lottery earnings will cover the winning tickets. Overall, it has been a good year, with Lotto Texas proceeds up 33 percent over the same period last year, he said.
In fiscal 2009, all lottery ticket sales garnered $3.7 billion $201 million coming from Lotto Texas.
Lottery expert Dawn Nettles, who operates the lotto report.com website, said dipping into the state fund means money is going out instead of coming in for Lotto Texas.
"That's like saying we're getting paid $1,000 a month and spending $2,000," she said.
Nettles has been a strong proponent of basing a winner's take on the amount of ticket sales.
But Lottery Commission members have decided, as a way to generate interest and fuel sales, that each new Lotto Texas game should begin at $4 million and grow in increments of at least $1 million per drawing, even if ticket sales don't necessarily cover the prizes.
"Lotto Texas has a very, very loyal following," Heith said. "We want to provide them with the game they want. We design games, all of them, to generate revenue for the state of Texas to support education."
Supporting education doesn't mean taking money away from revenue already earned, Nettles said.
"The state needs that money, and in this case the state is being shortchanged," she said. "They should be operating within their budget. They need to pay a winner based on what sales are."
On July 31, the winning ticket was advertised at $21 million, leaving the state with a $1.2 million prize deficit. On Wednesday night, a winning $6 million ticket was drawn, leaving the state with $2.2 million to make up.
The Lottery Commission used to operate a reserve account to make up such differences. That was depleted in May 2009 and wasn't replenished. The two most recent winning tickets are the first for which the general lottery fund is making up the deficit between sales and winnings.