PRESS RELEASE
From the Office of State Senator Leticia Van de Putte

For Immediate Release
October 19, 2009
Contact: Emily Amps, Office of Rep. Chris Turner, (512) 463-0374

State Senator Leticia Van De Putte and State Representative Chris Turner Unveil Veterans Cash Lottery Scratch-Off
New $2 Ticket Will Provide Much Needed Funding for Veterans' Programs

AUSTIN — Today State Senator Leticia Van De Putte and State Representative Chris Turner were joined by Texas veterans' leaders at a press conference to unveil the Veterans Cash Texas Lottery Scratch-off ticket, which will go on sale November 9, 2009 and will benefit the Permanent Fund for Veterans' Assistance (FVA).

The FVA was created by Legislature in 2007 to aid those who served our nation in uniform, as well as their families. Since its creation, the fund has received very little financial assistance and as a result, organizations that aid veterans in need are having to look elsewhere for grants and funding sources.

"We owe so much to the brave men and women who generation after generation have left their hometowns and families to serve our country. The Veterans Cash Scratch Off lottery ticket provides a secure revenue stream to fund critical services and programs for veterans and their families. Our veterans have already paid the price, now it is time for Texas to honor their sacrifice," said State Senator Van de Putte.

"With over 1.7 million veterans in Texas, we must honor their service and sacrifice by providing the resources and the support they have earned," said State Representative Chris Turner. "By providing a meaningful source of revenue for the Fund for Veterans Assistance, we can now provide needed help with job placement, health care and PTSD and TBI treatment as well as other services to those who have worn our nation's uniform."

"This fund and the money generated from the scratch-off will not repay the debt we owe our veterans who have served our nation in uniform," Turner continued. "We can't put a price tag on the incredible sacrifices these brave men and women have made to protect our freedom. But through the revenue from this scratch-off ticket, we can provide our veterans some help they need and have earned."

The Legislative Budget Board projects that the single scratch-off game will mean an economic impact for the Permanent Fund for Veterans' Assistance in the amount of approximately $8 million during the first full year it is in circulation.

During the 81st Legislative Session, HB 1299 and its Senate companion, SB 421 by Senators Van De Putte and Chris Harris, were filed to create the lottery scratch-off game. HB 1299 passed the House with only minutes to spare and was eventually added to Senator Van De Putte's SB 1655. The passage of legislation to create this scratch-off ticket has been a top priority for veterans' organizations.

Video footage of today's press conference can found here: http://www.house.state.tx.us/media/press.php

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