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December 11, 2015


Hi, Derryl. It sounds like you are asking about the "Play 'Em All" feature in Powerball that allows you to buy 26 plays -- one for each of the numbers available in the Powerball pool. Play 'Em All is available in Iowa, but I don't think you can use it with the Power Play option, which is what I believe you were referencing. The Play 'Em All only generates easy-pick plays. The clerk will find the buttons for the Play 'Em All feature under the "Special Offers" tab in the upper right corner of the home screen on the lottery terminal.

i wanted to play all the power ball number with extra play. the clerk said they could not do that. Is it still in effect?

Hi, Dennis. Great questions. The jackpot amount, as you know, has been going up just about every day, so the report that you saw may have been from a day or so ago. As I am writing this comment, the jackpot for Wednesday's world-record Powerball drawing is $1.5 billion annuity, $930 cash option. Both of those figures are the before-tax amounts. If you win the jackpot in Iowa and you are a U.S. resident, 25 percent federal withholding and 5 percent state withholding automatically apply to the prize amount you would receive. The Powerball game began in April 1992. Its predecessor was a game called LOTTO*America, which was played from February 1988 until that game was replaced by Powerball in April 1992.

WHO TV ch13 (when you were giving the JP as 1.4B) said that the cash option was 868M AFTER taxes. Was that correct or is that BEFORE taxes? Also when I was still working at a casino, our standard was Fed. with-holding of 25% and state of 5% are those the same as they use for the lottery? If I can ask another question, they mentioned that PB is 20yrs old. How long did Lotto America run and did the lottery ever have any other name(s)?

Hi, Mike. The Power Play number is selected using a random-number generator, while the Powerball numbers themselves are selected using ball-drawing machines.

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As the lottery’s vice president of external relations, I’m a member of the senior management team at the Iowa Lottery, where I’ve worked since 1999. I’ve spent my years at the lottery learning as much as I can about all the ins and outs of the lottery industry. I’ll put that knowledge to work here so I can share the behind-the-scenes details with you!