UPDATE: The Communications Group Wins Lottery Ad Contract

The Arkansas Lottery Commission has awarded its advertising contract to The Communications Group of Little Rock.

The commission on Wednesday unanimously approved an intent-to-award contract to the Little Rock firm, one of two groups to make formal presentations for the contract.

Four firms that made bids were not allowed to make presentations. Gary Lay, owner of GWL Advertising of Little Rock, told commissioners he had submitted a formal complaint regarding the RFP process, and that his firm never saw an RFP.

Lottery procurement director and staff attorney Bishop Woolsey said that nothing was formally filed by GWL before the deadline. 

In addition, the commission approved an intent-to-award contract to sell instant-win tickets to Scientific Games, Inc., based in suburban Atlanta. The firm will receive 1.75 percent of ticket sales. Lottery director Ernie Passilaigue says he expects roughly 2,500 retailers to be selling instant tickets by Oct. 29.

Also on Wednesday, the contract with the Union Plaza in downtown Little Rock for pernament office space was signed. The contract is for six years wiht an early-out option. The commission currently utilizes office space in the River Market's Museum Building.

Before adjourning, Passailaigue thanked Arkansans for making him feel at home since he started on June 29, and for treating him and his colleagues from South Carolina so well.

Passailagie is the former director of the South Carolina lottery who has hired away several of his former South Carolina colleagues to work for the Arkansas lottery.

The commission is planning an all-day meeting on Wednesday, Aug. 12, from UALR's Bowen School of Law. 

(The Associated Press contributed to this story.)