The Costa Rican Social Protection Board (JPS) has confirmed that the temporary subsidy to support its lottery vendors has been suspended, despite their request to extend it indefinitely.

The Board of Directors had assured that it would consider the extension of the financial aid and would carry out economic impact studies before making a decision.

However, after conducting the analysis, the Board said that it cannot approve the vendors’ request due to legal and financial reasons.

“After we carried out the analysis, it was determined that there is no legal support due to the impossibility of our finances and budgets to deliver this subsidy to lottery vendors,” said Evelyn Blanco, Production and Commercialization Manager of the JPS, to Monumental.

“Additionally, as draws are active, our lottery vendors still perceive their income from lottery sales. Their salary is higher than what they received through the subsidy,” she added.

Furthermore, the manager said that the JPS is training its employees so they can carry out operations virtually, with the aim of establishing new payment methods and marketing strategies through online platforms like WhatsApp.

According to figures from the JPS, the lockdown has generated a drop of $21.7m in the projected revenue for 2020.

After the JPS confirmed the suspension, vendors protested outside the board’s headquarters in San José against the decision. In addition, the lottery workers union said that the JPS is in a position to cover the subsidy, and that they will turn to other authorities and the presidency, if it comes to that, to follow up on the subject.