Arizona Lottery Director

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HORIZONTE talks with Arizona Lottery Director Jeff Hatch-Miller about contributions the Lottery has made in Arizona and to the Hispanic community. Also, how state programs are counting on lottery dollars to keep them going.

>> In 2009, the Arizona lottery
made more than $484 million in
sales.
This is up almost 3% over the
last fiscal year.
There are many programs and
communities that benefit from
these revenues.
Here is an example of how
lottery money is helping fund a
health program in Douglas,
Arizona.
>> One of the southern parts of
Arizona isn't a tourist
destination.
But for this person, this is
home.
>> A small, nice town.
Great people.
>> He found not only peace here,
but also his future.
Victor is on his way to becoming
an R.N. With the help --
>> Gave me the path and taught
me what I need to know in the
future so I can become an R.N.
And actually helping people.
It's a feeling that they
appreciate and give you a little
thank you and the happy faces
you give them.
I just like the little things
that count the most.
Have the best R.N.s.
>> And to help him realize his
medical career, they made it
possible for him to attend a
summer program at the Mayo
Clinic.
>> I like it so this is what I
want to do.
>> feeling better today?
>> Yes.
>> Victor will soon be a
registered nurse living and
working in the town he loves.
>> I'm Victor, from Douglas,
Arizona.
>> Thanks to you, stories like
this are being told every day,
all over this remarkable state
of ours and you play a role.

>> Joining me to talk about how
Arizona lottery is helping our
communities in our state is
Arizona lottery director Jeff
Hatch-Miller.
Jeff, welcome to "Horizonte."
>> Thank you.
It's great to see you again.
>> You've been very involved in
this state in a number of
different roles, in the state
legislature, more recently,
Arizona Corporation Commission
and now as the new director of
the lottery.
Unlike your former colleagues,
you've got more money than last
year.
>> We have term limits in
Arizona and my time was up
there, and when the new
governor, Jan Brewer, wanted
somebody to help manage the
lottery, I was there and she
asked me to do that duty.
It's a great opportunity.
Exciting to be there.
Now, I think it's contrary to
most people's expectations that
the lottery has prospered in
terms of given the economic
downturn.
I think the changes the
legislature made last year were
on target.
Run it like a business.
You ought to advertise
strategically.
That gets the product out and
makes the public understand what
it is they can take advantage of
and also giving new ways to play
the lottery.
They can go to a vending machine
and pick at their choice the
tickets they want to play.
Things like that that brought
the games to allow us to be
ahead about 3% this year.
>> I know what's particularly
important to you is not so much
what you sell, but what you do
with the money that you raise.
And we saw one example in the
video package.
Let's talk about the other
benefits to Arizona.
>> Victor is a great example of
really what we want to do in
Arizona.
You're right, José, it's not
about what we sell.
It's about what we make possible
and a program for victor where
he can learn at the Mayo Clinic
skills he may not learn at any
other nursing program was an
opportunity for him, but more
importantly, the people of
Douglas who he can serve.
And we're able to help with
$130 million this year, and
perhaps $150 million next year
that we can direct toward
programs that make a difference
in people's lives.
>> A lot of talk last year,
actually earlier this year,
about selling the lottery as a
way to generate needed cash for
Arizona.
What's the story?
Is that likely to happen?
>> The legislature put the
options on the table.
Selling it away, bonding it, or
helping it grow as a business.
And when we looked at the
options, the one that made the
most sense for now and in the
future was to continue it as a
state enterprise, a business.
And make it into a real
business, let it offer more
money so people can win more and
more often.
>> Has any state actually sold
their lottery operation?
>> No, but they've come close.
Generally they come to the same
conclusion.
Why for a short term gain would
you sell an asset that provides
so many great programs in this
state?
>> Generally, all of the
programs benefit the state.
But in the Hispanic community
you've got outreach.
>> In Somerton, in -- the tribal
lands, where a little bit of
money to help support the
programs goes a long way and
when you think about the kinds
of things we're involved in.
Healthcare is a perfect example.
Helping to develop nurses and
doctors in rural Arizona.
That's a wonderful thing.
We're working to help provide a
protection for some of our most
important historical sites in
terms of Douglas and in terms of
Bisbee and Florence and
communities throughout the state
and helping issues of wildlife.
There's so many ways in which
the money gets directed and the
benefit is tremendous.
>> And working with
organizations that focus
specifically on the Hispanic
community.
Like the Arizona Chamber of
Commerce and other things like
that.
>> Absolutely, not only do we
help in a general way to support
the programs every one of us
enjoys, but it goes to the
Hispanic Chamber of Commerce to
support their events during the
year and we have a program in
terms of the arts that allows
for a cultural diversity,
there's musical programs and we
provide scholarships and to have
music in their lives.
>> And you've opened up the
process where the discretionary
funds -- much goes to certain
purposes.
But you've opened up the
process.
Tell us about that where you
spend some of the discretionary
dollars.
>> When I came into the lottery,
I realized we had money that we
designated to help out in
smaller ways.
Not just the Heritage Fund or
the Healthy Arizona or the state
fund which we help out millions
of dollars, but to target money
to organizations like the
Hispanic Chamber of Commerce or
this program of music I'm
talking about and what we've
been able to do is move away
from money that's spent by kind
of the will of whoever was in
control of the lottery and
instead, opened it to a process
where we let everyone in the
community know these monies are
available and allow them to tell
us why they need the money and
why it's a great use of lottery
money and we can review them all
and take advantage of the ones
that will help the most people
in the greatest amount.
>> Thanks for joining us on
"Horizonte."
Congratulations on your
appointment and the continued
success of the Arizona lottery.
>> Thank you, José.
It's great to be here.

Jeff Hatch-Miller:Director, Arizona Lottery;

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