The latest results are in, and they show that the lottery raised a record $68 million for state causes during its latest financial year. That number includes more than $3 million to benefit Iowa veterans and their families.
We released preliminary figures today showing that lottery sales totaled $271.4 million in fiscal year 2011, which ended June 30. That marks the highest combined sales total from lotto, instant-scratch and pull-tab games since the lottery’s start in 1985.
And we can’t forget about lottery players! They took home a historic $159 million in prizes from those core games. That’s a 5.6 percent increase from the previous record prize total from those products set just a year earlier.
Each year, we concentrate on bringing new and exciting ideas to the market while keeping an eye on results. The past fiscal year saw Iowa Lottery players get into our promotions in record numbers, and at the same time, they won eight prizes of at least $1 million in our games.
Another huge highlight for us is the $3.1 million that the lottery raised for the Iowa Veterans Trust Fund to benefit our state’s veterans and their families. That’s the highest total for the cause since proceeds from select lottery games were first dedicated to the Veterans Trust Fund in 2008. It’s also the first time that annual lottery proceeds for veterans’ causes have topped $3 million. Iowans are definitely committed to the cause!
And finally, another side of the lottery’s success is the positive impact we have on businesses’ bottom line. Iowa businesses received $17.3 million in commissions from the lottery for their daily work in selling lottery products in FY 2011. That’s a $1.2 million increase from the year before.
Since the lottery’s start in 1985, its players have won more than $2.7 billion in prizes while the lottery has raised more than $1.3 billion for the state programs that benefit all Iowans.
Today, lottery proceeds in Iowa have three main purposes: They provide support for veterans, help for a variety of significant projects through the state General Fund, and backing for the Vision Iowa program, which was implemented to create tourism destinations and community attractions in the state and build and repair schools.