No more gambling at the gas pump: Lawmakers end electronic lotto tickets

Author:
Updated:
Original:

No more winning the Powerball straight from the screen of your gas pump.

The Minnesota House passed a bill Thursday prohibiting the sale of lottery tickets through websites or self-service machines (like a gas pump or ATM). Only six legislators voted against it.

The passing comes just a week after the Senate overwhelmingly voted for the the same ban, 56-8., which sends it to the governor's desk for a final signature.

Gov. Mark Dayton, however, won't sign it – but he won't veto it either, meaning it will become law.

Last year, when the legislature attempted to enact a similar ban, Dayton vetoed it at the end of the session, which didn't give lawmakers time to try to override his decision.

Why the ban?

There is one main thread stitched into the opposition of pay-at-the-pump (or buy-on-the-Web) gambling.

Did the state lottery have the authority to implement electronic lottery sales in the first place?

Since the agency began planning the new feature in 2013, skeptics have argued the agency needs legislative approval before bringing its games to the Web. Despite the protests, the lottery went ahead with its plans. In February of 2014, the first online scratch-off offerings hit the web.

The Star Tribune says with that, Minnesota became the first state to offer instant-play games online.

A bipartisan group of lawmakers took aim, saying Lottery Director Ed Van Petten overstepped his authority by implementing the new options without the Legislature’s consent.

That was still a driving force behind the ban passed this week.

"The heart of the issue is who creates the laws of the state — the regulatory industry or the Legislature?” said Rep. Tim Sanders, R-Blaine, according to the Session Daily.

The bill does allow the lottery to keep selling tickets online for games won by a drawing.

The Star Tribune says lottery officials are worried the state could get sued because it will be forced to break signed contracts with vendors.

According to the Session Daily, an amendment that would have allowed those contracts to end before the ban went into effect was defeated.

Last year, supporters of the ban also cited a concern about promoting easy access to gambling.

Next Up

Screen Shot 2020-11-25 at 7.34.43 AM

Watch: Drunk squirrel in Minnesota captures the world's attention

The squirrel was immediately cut off after nearly tipping over.

Screen Shot 2020-11-25 at 7.15.09 PM

Small town gym refusing to close facing lawsuit from attorney general

The gym is facing a lawsuit and a temporary restraining order to halt their operations.

credit card, payment

Money Gal Coaching: Bouncing back after living your best life

Kelly Blodgett started Money Gal Coaching after paying down nearly $50K in debt in 18 months.

flickr-mall-of-america-mitchell-hirsch-march-2019

When do stores open on Black Friday this year?

Many major retailers will be open Black Friday, some for extended hours.

police tape, crime scene

Man found dead outside home near Cass Lake

The man was reportedly shot outside the property.

Minnesota_Welcome_Sign_-_Minnesota_Welcomes_You_-_Taylors_Falls_(28269804891)

Gov. Walz announces $1M in grants to boost Minnesota tourism

The money will be used for marketing efforts to attract people to Minnesota's hard-hit tourist spots.

coronavirus, ICU

Nov. 25 COVID-19 update: 72 deaths ties Minnesota's single-day high

A COVID-19 update will not be provided on Thanksgiving Day.

Texa-Tonka

Revival to open its fourth Twin Cities location

The fried chicken and smoked meat maestros are moving to St. Louis Park.

Duluth and Case Recreation Center

St. Paul to open two extra temporary shelters for homeless people

Mayor Melvin Carter announced the new shelters will be opened in the event of excess demand.

vote, election

Minnesota once again had the highest election turnout in the country

Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, a record percentage of voters also sent in absentee ballots.

Related