The legislation was filed five months after the state Houserejected a similar advisory referendum by a vote of 69-50.
Gov. Mike Easley, who wants a lottery with proceeds going to hiseducation programs, lobbied for more than a year for the vote. Acoalition of Republicans and liberal Democrats defeated themeasure.
"It's still going to be an uphill battle, that's no secret,"said Rep. Bill Owens, D-Pasqoutank, the bill sponsor. He's stillhopeful because last year's vote was the first one in the House inrecent history.
"That's better than it's ever been done before," Owens said.
Wednesday's bill would create a statewide referendum in whichvoters would check yes or no to the question of whether to have an"Education Lottery." The General Assembly would still have toapprove a lottery for the game to become a reality.
North Carolina is the only state on the East Coast without alottery. It will be surrounded by lottery states once Tennesseestarts its game after voters approved state-run gambling inNovember.
Lottery supporters say North Carolina residents are educatingchildren in other states when they cross the border to play lotterygames.
Polls consistently have shown a majority of state residentssupport a lottery. Strong anti-lottery forces - including churchesand social justice groups - helped persuade a majority of lawmakersto oppose the referendum.
Other legislation filed Wednesday includes:
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