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Idaho Lottery pays $55.5 million dividend to public schools

The Idaho Lottery had $277.6 million in annual sales during the last fiscal year and awarded $185.7 million in prizes to players.
Credit: Idaho Lottery
Gov. Brad Little holds up a check worth $55.5 million presented to the state from the Idaho Lottery.

BOISE, Idaho — The Idaho Lottery presented a $55,500,000 dividend check to Gov. Brad Little Wednesday. 

"Idaho's public schools and the state's Permanent Building Fund are the real winners of the Idaho Lottery. After 31 years, the Idaho Lottery has provided nearly one billion dollars to enhance public education, improve college campuses, and provide safe workforce buildings," Little said.

"This year we faced a significant test in responsibly providing meaningful resources to our beneficiaries, Idaho public schools and the Permanent Building Fund, but together with our players, our valued retailers, and vendors, we delivered," said Jeff Anderson, Idaho Lottery Director.

The total dividend transferred to the Department of Education was $34,687,500. Of that amount, $20,812,500 is earmarked for use by the Department's districts based on average daily attendance for public school maintenance and operations expenses. The remaining $13,875,000 is for the Department of Education's Bond Levy Equalization Fund.

"The Idaho Lottery has been supporting schools and students across the state through annual dividends for more than 30 years," Superintendent of Public Instruction Sherri Ybarra said. "This year, in a time of unprecedented challenges for Idaho's schools, nearly $35 million will go to much needed projects such as electrical repairs, boiler upgrades, and fire safety equipment."

The Lottery also transferred $20,812,500 to the State of Idaho Permanent Building Fund Account. Since 1989, the Idaho Lottery has returned $422,725,000 back to support permanent buildings at, among other places, Idaho's university campuses.

The Idaho Lottery ended its fiscal year on June 30, recording $277.6 million in annual sales, awarding $185.7 million in prizes to players, and retailers earning $16.2 million in commissions.

Including this year's dividend, the Idaho Lottery has now returned $961.5 million to the state since it began in July 1989.