Internet Lottery Tickets Bring Needed Revenue to Quarantined States
As the United States continues to battle the COVID-19 pandemic, states that sell lottery tickets online are benefitting from needed revenue. These states have reported an average hike of 10% in sales since the start of lockdowns.
So, where does the money go, and why are people still buying? In short, state lotteries fund public interests, like education, infrastructure, and aiding the elderly. Only eight states have legalized this form of online gambling, but it seems to be working.
In fact, New Hampshire sales went up by 38% after local retailers closed their doors. Meanwhile, states that only allow in-person sales are losing sales dramatically. For example, Massachusetts lottery ticket sales dropped by 33%, and keno decreased by 53%. Interstate games are also feeling the pinch.
These states have legal online portals:
- New Hampshire
- North Carolina
Powerball & Mega Millions Drop Jackpot Amounts
Since state lockdowns began, lottery operators have been scrambling for solutions. With retailers shuttered, the Powerball and Mega Millions have amended their games. Reportedly, guaranteed starting jackpots and minimum increases are eliminated.
Initially, Powerball said it would reduce the starting jackpot from $40 million to $20 million on April 2nd. However, officials have now decided that lottery ticket sales and interest rates will determine the advertised jackpot.
Then, Mega Millions made a similar decision on April 3rd in response to further lockdowns. Both lotteries have claimed that states need the revenues to support budgets. While this is true, the public is not happy about lotteries operating during a crisis.
How Internet Lottery Tickets Help
With 42 states under stay-at-home orders, only essential businesses can operate. Since many retailers don’t fall under “essential”, sales are dropping. Even states with online transactions for lottery tickets are reporting less revenue.
However, they’re still getting money to help these causes:
- New Hampshire – public education.
- North Carolina – public education.
- Virginia – public education.
- Georgia – public education, including tuition grants and scholarships.
- Illinois – public education, infrastructure projects, and special causes.
- Kentucky – college scholarships, grant programs.
- Michigan – public education, local businesses.
- Pennsylvania – programs for older residents.
As you can see, these are important during the pandemic, especially for impacted communities. So, if you can, support your state lottery, and you might even win.
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