TALLAHASSEE, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Florida Lottery today announced that lottery ticket sales have exceeded $4 billion in fiscal year 2011, which ended on June 30. Lottery sales are up statewide by 2.8 percent over the same period a year ago. The $4 billion in ticket sales will result in approximately $1.122 billion for the Educational Enhancement Trust Fund (EETF) – representing approximately a $12 million increase from the previous year’s transfers from ticket sales. Florida’s Northwest region, in particular, has experienced more than a nine percent increase in lottery sales this year.
“This success is directly tied to the agency’s efforts to create new and innovative Lottery products designed to drive sales and maximize contributions to education. This year, the Lottery was able to exceed our sales goal – making this the best sales year since fiscal year 2008,” said Florida Lottery Secretary Cynthia O’Connell. “This is definitely a trend in the right direction.”
Florida Lottery sales experienced declines during the recent economic recession, in line with national trends and with players having fewer discretionary dollars to spend on entertainment. Florida’s Pensacola region specifically was hit hard last spring with the impact of the Deepwater Horizon oil leak, which significantly affected tourism and out-of-state dollars being spent in Florida. In order to exceed the 2011 fiscal year-end sales goal of $3.97 billion, the Lottery focused its efforts on ensuring that product, marketing and sales activities were responsive to market conditions through a number of Lottery promotions and aggressive retailer-consumer engagement at the lottery ticket point of purchase.
“Secretary Cynthia O’Connell and her staff should be commended for their hard work to bring greater efficiencies and smart business practices to the Florida Lottery,” said Governor Rick Scott. “They are setting an example of accountability and producing results that will benefit our kids.”
The state of Florida’s economy may be a factor in lottery ticket sale increases. Florida has recorded over-the-year gains in employment over the past eight consecutive months, with approximately 63,800 jobs having been added in Florida since Governor Rick Scott took office in January. One year after the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, tourists are returning to North Florida’s sandy white beaches. And, according to the Florida Legislative Office of Economic and Demographic Research, Florida is experiencing positive growth in personal income.
“Under Governor Scott’s leadership, the Lottery will continue to focus on efficiencies that will help increase sales and thus serve to benefit Florida’s students and schools,” added Secretary O’Connell.
The Florida Lottery will streamline its operations to meet a number of aggressive goals in fiscal year 2012. The agency will maximize revenue for education through marketing efforts and further development of its product mix, while continuing on a path of accountability and fiscal responsibility. By further reducing its operating costs as a percentage of sales to 4.83 percent and working diligently to increase its total number of retailers to 13,700, the agency will strive to increase ticket sales to $4.22 billion and education contributions to $1.25 billion.
Recognized as one of the most efficient lotteries in the nation, the Florida Lottery has remained a strong partner in helping generate additional funds for public education even during the recent tough economic times. Lottery contributions have made an impact with more than $1 billion being transferred annually to the EETF for the past nine consecutive fiscal years, representing approximately six percent of the state's total education budget.
Florida voters, by a two-to-one margin, approved a constitutional amendment in 1986 authorizing the state to operate a lottery for the purpose of generating significant additional moneys for education. Today, Floridians continue to show their support by purchasing billions of dollars in Lottery products per year, resulting in contributions of more than $22 billion to the EETF since 1988. For more information regarding the Florida Lottery, its games and its contributions to education, visit www.flalottery.com.
When you play, we all win.
"$22 Billion for Florida's Students"