Sep 29, 2004, 9:04 am
California Lottery officials announced a stellar year with estimated sales for Fiscal Year (FY) 2003-04 over $2.9 billion, representing the highest sales since the commencement of the Lottery in 1985.
Also celebrating are the Lottery players who won more than $1.5 billion in prizes, and retailers who earned $205 million in commissions and bonuses. Most importantly, schools benefit with more than $1.090 billion being transferred to public schools, including $15 million (the cash value) from an unclaimed SuperLOTTO(R) Plus jackpot of $28.5 million. "This marks the fourth consecutive year the California Lottery has transferred over a billion dollars to public education and further demonstrates its commitment to achieving the public's mandate of providing supplemental funding to education," said Dennis Sequeira, Interim Director, California Lottery.
"The partnership with Lottery employees, retailers, players, and business associates helped the Lottery to achieve Scratchers(R) sales of over $1.338 billion, increasing the previous year's sales by over $127 million. Also, contributing to the record-breaking sales was the $3 'Bingo' game (launched in May 2003 and available through FY 2003-04) and the $5 'Red, Hot & Blue 7's' game which yielded $78 million in its initial five weeks of sales." These tremendous sales results provide additional evidence of how the Lottery could increase sales and contributions to public education if legislation allowed it to increase the prize payout in its games. In addition to increasing sales, the Lottery implemented the world's largest and most complex gaming system with more than 80,000 pieces of equipment installed in over 18,000 Lottery retailer locations.
Ultimately, estimated revenues from the Lottery generated almost $126 per pupil, supporting over 8.3 million students in California's public schools. Lottery funds also continue to support other areas of public education including: K-12, community colleges, the University of California, the California State University, adult education, charter schools and even the California Youth Authority receives Lottery funds. "The California Lottery was never intended to be the panacea for education; yet, its funding has made a positive difference in the lives of many of California's students," said Jack O'Connell, State Superintendent of Public Instruction.
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