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PCSO’s extension of STL licenses subject to presidential approval

THE Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office, clarifying reports it has extended the licenses of PCSO Small-Town Lottery (STL) authorized agent corporations (AACs), said the extensions were still waiting the approval of President Aquino.

All STL “authority to operate” or licenses expire on June 30.

PCSO General Manager Jose Ferdinand M. Rojas II said the PCSO Board approved a three-month extension of operations of 19 STL AACs, “pending the approval of the President.”

The board, in Resolution 122 Series of 2013, found “merit and sufficient legal basis” in the recommendation of the PCSO Online Lottery Sector, to extend the licenses. The Online Lottery Sector, which monitors the operations of STL AACs, said the immediate termination of the operations of the 19 STL AACs would result in the proliferation of illegal bookies and illegal numbers games, decrease in the Charity Fund due to loss of sales of contribution; and the loss of employment of the more than 140,000 bet collectors employed by the STL corporations.

The extension was approved because PCSO is refining the final version of the PCSO Loterya ng Bayan (PLB) game with the Office of the President, the PCSO said. The President also approves the PCSO PLB implementing rules.

At present, there are 19 PCSO-accredited STL AACs operating in 14 out of the country’s 81 provinces, 17 of them in Luzon and two in the Visayas. There are no STL operations in Mindanao. The STL AACs employ 142,395 sales supervisors and agents; in 2011 and 2012, they helped annual STL gross revenues reach more than P4 billion, or P8 billion for those two years.

Income from STL operations allowed PCSO to pay off the previous PCSO Board’s tax arrears of P4 billion, besides contributing substantially to the agency’s Charity Fund that allocates financial assistance to individuals and institutions for medical- and healthcare-related concerns.






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