The Missouri House has given first-round approval to a plan that would cut the amount of money available for state lottery prizes to increase funding for state-run veterans homes.
The legislation would reduce lottery prize funds by about 3.5 percent and put the money toward early childhood education programs that currently get funds from the Missouri Gaming Commission. Gaming Commission money now used for early childhood education would instead go to veterans' homes.
That could increase funding for state-run homes by about $27 million. Veterans' groups say more homes are needed to accommodate aging Vietnam War veterans. But a fiscal estimate included with the legislation says cutting lottery prize money could hurt ticket sales.
The measure must be approved once more before it goes to the Senate.