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Bigger payouts increase lottery sales

Oklahoma House Bill 1837, signed last year, is working to boost lottery sales and funding for education, according to Oklahoma Lottery officials. 

Total sales since July 1 are up 40 percent. Sales of instant games, the Lottery's best-selling product, are outpacing sales for 2017 by 60 percent following a July 1 rollout of new games with higher payouts.

As a result of sales exceeding projections, the Lottery is projecting a double-digit percentage increase in its contribution to education next year.

House Bill 1837 removed a profit restriction that had hampered Lottery sales since its inception in 2005. By removing the restriction, the Lottery has been able to offer new games with better payouts that attract increased sales.

The Lottery projects the new law will result in $330 million being sent to education over the next five years, a $110 million increase over what would have been sent without the new law. Under the law, new profits from lottery sales will be earmarked specifically for reading and science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) programs in common education. House Bill 1837 required the Lottery to send $50 million annually to education entities under the distribution process used since the Lottery's inception, and to send profits above $50 million to common education for reading and STEM.

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