Does Revenue From Lotto Ticket Sales

Thursday, November 29, 2012 - 11:14pm

On the day of the Powerball drawing, stores in Texas were selling lotto tickets at a rate of $46,000 per minute. The odds of winning the lottery are almost nonexistent, so, where does the money from lotto ticket sales go? An NBC News report says states get as little as $0.11 per dollar from Powerball tickets sold.

But the revenue from Texas lotto sales is divided as such: about 63% goes to prize winners, 12% goes to retailers and other programs, and 25% goes to public school education in Texas. But lawmakers say this last part is untrue and there is no money specifically dedicated to education at all.     

State Representative Charles Perry says, "they sold it as if it were an end all, be all for funding education and truly the way they administered the appropriations of the funds, it's not even anywhere close to what they told the public." He's talking about the Texas legislators who sold the idea of the lottery in 1992, telling people that if they supported the lottery ticket bill, it would mean adding more and more money for education. But that wasn't all true. Perry says net revenue from state lotto ticket sales go into a general fund, to be used for things like health and human services, and public safety and criminal justice. He says revenue from lotto ticket sales are not solely dedicated to education like the Texas Lotto Commission says.

State Senator Jose Rodriguez released the following statement about Texas education spending and lotto ticket sales:

"If the state of Texas is going to continue to have the Lottery, which I suspect it will, it's imperative that money be used to offset our major needs. Education is at the top of that list. Unfortunately, the proportion of money from the Texas Lottery going to education has been going down since its inception in 1998. Full funding for education ought to be restored. "

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