The Iowa Lottery had a record-breaking year. Sales topped $339 million dollars in fiscal year 2013. It's the highest dollar amount in the organization's nearly 30 year history.
“Over the last year, the state of Iowa has hit the jackpot,” says Iowa Lottery CEO Terry Rich.
Iowans cashed in $200.8 million in prizes and the lottery cut another check worth $84.9 million to the state. Most of the went into the general fund, but the lottery set aside $2 million for the Veterans Trust Fund.
“Powerball had a phenomenal year with two jackpots over 500 million and two jackpots over 300 million,” says Rich.
The actual number of Powerball tickets sold was down by about 10-15%, but the $2 price pushed up sales. Officials say lotto tickets aren't the top sellers in the state. Iowans buy more than twice as many scratch tickets.
“I play them all pretty much,” says Don Raeford.
“Not usually,” says Leroy Bartels.
“Every time you walk into a store or an individual walks into a story, they have to decide whether to purchase or not purchase and this last year, a lot of people purchased and a lot of people won,” says Rich.
There are plans for more varied price points on lotto games similar to what you see on scratch tickets. The Iowa lottery is also looking at partnering with neighboring states on a few games this fall.