Senate weighs privacy for lottery winners

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By Catherine Holland By Catherine Holland

PHOENIX (AP) -- Lottery winners in Arizona would be able to keep their anonymity under a bill moving forward in the state Senate.

A Senate committee advanced the measure in a 5-2 vote after a contentious debate Wednesday.

Proponents say players shouldn't face safety risks simply because they won big.  Critics say the measure would limit government transparency.

The state House of Representatives overwhelmingly approved the measure earlier this month.

The proposal comes after a recent Powerball jackpot win by a Fountain Hills man whose name was released under Arizona's public records laws. 

The bill requires prizewinners' hometown and county be made public and allows winners to voluntarily be named.

Most states require names of lottery winners be disclosed. Arizona currently allows their names to be obtained through public records laws.