DC Lottery to stop cashing winning tickets due to shutdown - DC News FOX 5 DC WTTG

DC Lottery to stop cashing winning tickets due to shutdown

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If you won the D.C. Lottery recently, hopefully you have already cashed in your ticket. Beginning on Saturday, all winning payouts are on hold until the government shutdown ends.

"The ultimate humiliation. I can't believe it," Ella Kelly said while waiting to buy some tickets Friday.

D.C. Lottery Director Buddy Roogow says the lottery is embroiled in the shutdown mess like all other D.C. government entities, even though none of its operating cash comes from the government.

"All the money the D.C. Lottery brings in and spends comes from the players, whether they be from D.C., Maryland or Virginia,” says Roogow. “We are also subject to the same problem that all of the D.C. government is subject to, which is expenditures cannot be made, contracts cannot be paid until the shutdown ends.”

Johnny Rich came into the Tenleytown Market to see if he was holding a winner. He wasn't. If he had won, Rich says he would have taken it all in stride.

"I guess I would just sit on it, wait until the shutdown was over," Rich says.

Kelly says she would want her money now.

"To think that something like that would happen. It's unconscionable. Give people their money," she says.

The hold on payouts applies to instant tickets and numbers games.

"What I advise -- continue to buy your tickets,” says Roogow. “We will honor the winning tickets as soon as the shutdown ends. We tell players sign the back, put it in a safe place and bring it to a retailer or the lottery office after the shutdown, which we all hope is very soon."

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