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The Latest: GOP argues for lottery privacy bill

July 10, 2019

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — The Latest on a bill that would keep the names of lottery winners in Wisconsin secret (all times local):

1:10 p.m.

Republican leaders are trying to convince their colleagues to pass a bill that would allow lottery winners to keep their identities secret.

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos introduced the bill in April on the same day that Manuel Franco of West Allis claimed a $768 million Powerball prize. Franco told reporters he started feeling paranoid when he realized he had won.

Vos submitted written remarks to the Assembly Committee on State Affairs during a public hearing on the bill Wednesday. He says the bill would protect “the sanctity of a citizen’s privacy.” Bill co-sponsor Gary Tauchen told the committee that most people don’t want identifying information released to the public.

The bill would prohibit a retailer who sold a lottery ticket, state lottery officials and the state Department of Revenue from releasing winners’ names without their consent. The measure also would exempt any written records of winners’ names from Wisconsin’s open records law.

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10 a.m.

Wisconsin Republicans are planning to take public comments on a bill that would keep lottery winners’ names secret.

The Legislature’s Committee on State Affairs is set to hold a hearing on the measure in the state Capitol on Wednesday afternoon.

Assembly Speaker Robin Vos introduced the bill in April on the same day that 24-year-old Manuel Franco of West Allis came forward to claim a $768 million Powerball prize. Franco said he started feeling paranoid as soon as he realized he had the winning ticket.

Vos cited Franco in a memo seeking co-sponsors for the bill, saying forcing lottery winners to reveal their identity exposes them to fraud and harassment.

Lottery officials have countered that they want transparency to build public trust in their games.

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