Lottery Director John Musgrave said the technicians could not have done anything nefarious by rewiring the switches. There was no way for them to modify a machine's game play or steal money. But he said each of the machines' security measures are important.
"We do not want to compromise the integrity of the games in any sense," he said.
During an hour of discussion on the decision, commissioners considered fining Howell and Mangum, revoking their licenses, suspending their licenses and placing them on probation.
Members ultimately decided to fine the men $1,000 each, place them on six months probation. Their licenses will be revoked if they are caught violating any Lottery Commission standards during that time.
The commission also plans to send a letter to all 258 video lottery technicians in the state, forbidding anyone from tampering with the machines' security features.
Also Thursday, Lottery revenues for March 2013 are nearly $20 million lower than in March 2012.
The Lottery brought in $124 million among all its revenue sources, including on-line games, instant games, racetrack video lottery, limited video lottery, table games and the Greenbrier Casino.
A year ago, the Lottery raked in $142 million.
Racetrack video lottery games saw the biggest drop, going from $73.8 million in March 2012 to $60.8 million last month.
Since July 2012, the lottery has brought in more than $997 million. That is slightly less than this time last year, when the lottery had made $1.09 billion.
Racetrack video lottery revenues also saw the largest decline in year-to-date revenues, dropping to $490 million this year from $574 million in 2012.Contact writer Zack Harold at 304-348-7939 or zack.har...@dailymail.com. Follow him at www.twitter.com/ZackHarold.