The California Lottery is minting money. This year, revenues will soar to $6.9 billion.
That not only breaks a record, it more than doubles the amount from just a few years before. The California Lottery’s revenues now top those at Fortune 500 companies like Clorox, Yum Brands and Harley Davidson.
The recent boom has been fueled by a wave of gigantic jackpots. Newer games like Powerball and a $30 scratch ticket offer huge prizes, and California’s lottery players have responded by gambling more and more.
That should be good news for the state’s schools, the lottery's only beneficiary. Yet even as ticket sales have skyrocketed, California schools aren’t seeing much of a return on that investment. A KPCC/LAist investigation found contributions to education by the lottery are essentially unchanged from 12 years ago, even though revenues are up by billions.
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