With the state of Ohio preparing to install 17,500 slot machines at the state’s 7 horse racing tracks this year, the man who was expected to handle this expansion of the Ohio Lottery has resigned.
In a letter addressed to Governor Ted Strickland on August 4th, 2009, Lottery Director Michael Dolan said that his reflection has led him to believe that the best interests of the Lottery and the state as well as his personal endeavors, would be best fulfilled by resigning from the Lottery and give the leadership to someone else.
Gov. Strickland accepted Dolan’s resignation and praised him for his contribution to the state lottery and for guiding the completed transition of the lottery to a new keno vendor that will save Ohio $20 million annually.
Gov. Strickland’s spokesperson, Amanda Wurst, refused to answer whether the Governor asked Dolan to resign from his position, which he will continue until Strickland chooses a replacement. Dolan has been under fire from his critics, including Senator Jon Husted (Republican-Kettering), who said that Dolan did not even know the location of the Lebanon Raceway during a testimony before a Senate committee hearing in July 2009.
Dolan also drew criticism in March 2009 when Ohio State Inspector General Tom Charles criticized Dolan for giving free lottery tickets to a state trooper who stopped Dolan on Interstate 71, but did not give him a ticket. Senate President Bill Harris (Republican-Ashland), surprised by Gov. Strickland’s sudden announcement, said that Governor must choose the right successor.