The Hoosier Lottery has become a billion-dollar industry, at least when it comes to lottery tickets.
According to the State Lottery Commission, the state generated $1.14 billion in lottery ticket sales from July 2021 to February.
Increased sales for Indiana lottery tickets
The state’s budget year began July 1, so surpassing the $1 billion mark only took seven months. Scratch-off tickets contributed 80% of overall sales by generating $886 million, a 4% increase from the same time last year.
As a whole, the Indiana Lottery is on pace to collect $330 million in revenue this year.
The other big generator for the state was Powerball. Sales for the popular lottery game are up 30%.
What could have been in Indiana
Earlier this month, the lottery commission attempted to add online games to its assortment of options. However, state lawmakers used language in HB 1260 to prevent the lottery from expanding without the legislature’s consent.
Interference from state lawmakers was welcomed by the retail lottery ticket vendors, many of whom were not happy about the addition of online games.
Retail vendors argued the 1989 Lottery Act was out of date since lawmakers had not considered cell phones or the internet when establishing the law.
Before legislative interference, House Speaker Todd Huston wanted to make sure retail lottery ticket vendors were on board with the change.
“I want to make sure that whatever is done supports local retailers, the money stays in local communities. I made it extraordinarily clear that my expectation is the local retailers need to be supportive of it and you need to be make sure that they’re, you know, incredible participants in these types of discussions.”
Although the prospect of online lottery games is not finished, the commission will need approval from the General Assembly before moving forward.
Had Indiana legalized online lottery sales, it would have been the ninth state in the US to do so.
Indiana has other gaming issues
In February, state Reps. Ethan Manning and Doug Gutwein filed House Bill 1356, which aimed to legalize IN online casino games. Unfortunately, the bill died two weeks later after it could not make it out of the Public Policy Committee.
State lawmakers have hinted at trying again in 2023.