Progressive councillors question proposed Exeter lottery
The Progressive Group of Councillors has described a proposed lottery in Exeter as poorly thought through, with many questions remaining. The Labour-led Council pushed through the establishment of a community lottery for Exeter to raise money to support the city’s voluntary sector. See detail here.
Progressive group Councillors are concerned about Labour's refusal to have a formal public consultation to set up the community lottery.
Liberal Democrat Councillor Michael Mitchell said:
"This is a city wide initiative that will impact many local organisations. This proposal seems poorly thought through and leaves many questions unanswered. The rush to push through a decision within two weeks of it first being presented without proper consultation is also a matter for concern. Certainly some Faith groups are opposed to lotteries in principle as they view it as a form of gambling. They are set to miss out.”
Green Party Councillor Tess Read said:
“We know that in all lotteries there are many more losers than winners and the chances of winning the larger prizes is infinitesimally small. At a time of a cost of living crisis, with many households facing serious hardship, can local people really afford an Exeter lottery to fund community services?
“Furthermore, with plans to allow the public to decide how 50% of the ticket sale is allotted, there will clearly be winners and losers. Some charities will inevitably do better than others. It could literally be a lottery as to which charities receive funds and which don't.
“Given the savage Tory austerity cuts, it is understandable that councils are looking at other ways to fund important community services. But the company earmarked to administer the Exeter lottery will cream off a whopping 17% of the value of ticket sales. This is an unreasonably large chunk of money disappearing into the pockets of a private company. It looks like they will be the lottery’s biggest winner.”