FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                      

                         

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

                         

CONTACT: David Workman         

(208) 334-2600          

                          

Idaho Lottery Delivers Seventh Consecutive Record Dividend;

Surpasses $2 Billion in Sales

 

Boise – For the first time in its 21-year history, the Idaho Lottery returned a seventh consecutive record-setting dividend to the people of Idaho.  During a presentation in the Governor’s Ceremonial Office at the Idaho State Capitol this morning, Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter accepted a dividend check from the Idaho State Lottery Commission for $36.5 million on behalf of the citizens of Idaho.  Over the course of 21 years, the Idaho Lottery now has returned a total of $473.8 million to the people of Idaho.

 

Idaho’s public schools and public buildings are the beneficiaries of the Idaho Lottery’s success. And that means Idaho taxpayers are the real winners here,” Governor Otter said. “None of that would be possible without the responsible play of Idaho citizens and visitors to our state, or without the commitment to transparency and integrity that our great Lottery employees, vendors and retailers ensure every day.”

 

The Idaho Lottery also surpassed a monumental threshold for sales at the end of Fiscal Year 2010.  With record annual sales of $147 million for FY10, the Idaho Lottery has now surpassed the $2 billion sales threshold as an enterprise for the State since selling its first $1 ticket on July 19, 1989.

 

“Today’s dividend announcement and this past year’s achievements during a difficult economy are the result of smart work from a dedicated team of professionals at the Idaho Lottery,” said Jeff Anderson, Idaho Lottery Director. “During the past twelve months, Team Lottery has worked with local Idaho business owners, our retail partners, on enhancing their business while offering affordable entertainment and value to our players. Thank you to our players, retailers, and integral vendors for supporting us throughout the year.”

 

For the third consecutive year, Idaho Lottery sales have increased.  In the past four years, Idaho Lottery sales have grown a total of 12.5%, including 5.2% in Fiscal Year 2010.  Although a small state lottery by national standards, Idaho ranked 15th out of 43 state lotteries in overall sales by percentage of increase through the first nine months of Fiscal Year 2010.

 

During today’s ceremony, Idaho Lottery Commissioners Roger Jones and Mel Fisher joined Governor Otter in presenting dividend checks to the Department of Education and the Department of Administration.

 

“On behalf of our schools, I want to thank Idahoans for contributing each and every year to public education through the Idaho Lottery,” said Rob Sauer, Deputy Superintendent of Innovation and Choice, State Department of Education.  “The best investment we can make in our children’s future is to build a quality education system.  We at the State Department of Education work hard every day to raise student achievement and ensure a brighter future for all Idaho kids.”

 

Historically, Lottery dividends are shared by Idaho’s Public School Building Account and the Permanent Building Fund. A statute change in 2009, which sunsets in 2014, sets aside a portion of Lottery funds above the Fiscal Year 2008 funding level of $34 million for the Bond Levy Equalization Fund.  This year, the Bond Levy Equalization Fund will receive $2.5 million, bringing the two-year total to $3.5 million since the law was changed.

 

“The Idaho Lottery dividend is a key source of revenue for the Department of Administration’s permanent building fund,” said Mike Gwartney, Director of the Idaho Department of Administration. “This funding represents our ability to provide needed maintenance and safety improvements to our state facilities and initiate quality upgrades on our collegiate campuses.”

 

In a year that created one new millionaire on the Idaho $1,000,000 Raffle, one jackpot winner on Wild Card, and six jackpot winners on Double Play Daily, the Idaho Lottery marked its 21st year by establishing seven new records in Fiscal Year 2010.  In addition to the record dividend achievements and sales figures, the Lottery also set records in Scratch Games™ sales ($90.2 million), total prizes paid to the players ($88.4 million), commissions earned by Idaho Lottery retailers ($8.7 million), and the total number of players (148) who won $10,000 or more.

 

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ABOUT THE IDAHO LOTTERY

The Idaho Lottery responsibly provides a variety of entertaining games featuring Powerball, Scratch™ tickets, and PullTabs with a high degree of integrity to maximize the dividend for Idaho public schools and the permanent building fund. Since their inception in 1989, the Idaho Lottery has sold over $2 billion in products, awarded nearly $1.2 billion in prizes to players, returned more than $117.1 million in retail commissions, and distributed more than $473.8 million in Lottery dividends to state public schools and buildings. To learn more, please visit www.idaholottery.com.