ELYRIA, Ohio (AP) — The Ohio Lottery says it's no longer paying $115 registration fees for schools taking part in the annual Scripps National Spelling Bee, favoring instead a program that helps gambling addicts.

The (Elyria) Chronicle-Telegram (http://bit.ly/N0kEbB ) reports officials cited budget cuts for discontinuing about $178,000 in fees for participating Ohio schools. The agency has paid them since 2008.

Lottery spokeswoman Danielle Frizzi-Babb says the agency's budget for sponsorship programs was cut from $1.7 million in the last fiscal year to $1.5 million. She also says the state has cut the lottery budget to a level similar to 2008.

Frizzi-Babb says more funding was needed for a gambling support group as additional casinos open in Ohio.

The newspaper reports the agency's overall revenue in the last fiscal year totaled about $2.7 billion.


Information from: The Chronicle-Telegram, http://www.chronicletelegram.com