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Government must maintain funding for good causes when awarding National Lottery licence

21 February, 2012 - by Mary Lou McDonald TD

Sinn Féin Public Expenditure and Reform Spokesperson Mary Lou McDonald TD has today written to Minister Brendan Howlin calling on him to contractually guarantee current good cause funding levels are maintained when awarding the new National Lottery licence contract.

Deputy McDonald said:

“The Government’s Capital Programme announcement of late last year boldly stated that it intended to use the upfront payment from the new National Lottery operator to fund the National Children’s Hospital. It is interesting to note that this capital funding commitment has now been watered down to receipt of just one third of the projected proceeds from the up-front payment. Minister Howlin needs to clarify to what purpose the government intends to use the balance of the proceeds from the up-front payment.

“Currently one third of the National Lottery’s sales provide funds for good causes amounting to €244 million in 2010. Now more than ever community groups and services rely heavily on this funding stream. It would be simply unacceptable for the government to offer up a twenty-five year licence worth €1.2 billion euro without including a clause that guarantees current funding levels for good causes be maintained and indeed increased by up to 5% if and when sales increase.” ENDS

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