Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf has stated that online lottery ticket sales will help to boost overall revenues for the state lottery.
Late last year, Pennsylvania lawmakers decided to approve a gaming package that would see the gambling industry of the state evolve in several areas. Included in the mix was the addition of online lottery ticket sales. The state lottery has struggled for some time with a loss of over $75 million when reviewing the fiscal year of 2016-2017. To help, online lottery ticket sales will begin this year and the Governor of the state feels that this change will help turn around the underperforming land-based ticket sales.
Online Lottery Game Sales
Governor Tom Wolf has presented his 2018-2019 fiscal year budget and included the gaming expansion that was passed last year, which allowed the online lottery ticket sales. Governor Wolf has stated that along with lawmakers, steps are being taken to improve the fiscal condition of the lottery fund to provide revenues needed to re-establish a reserve fund of $75 million. This fund was started in 2011. A big part of reintroducing this fund is to offer online games via the lottery.
Wolf’s plan includes enabling the Lottery to launch new product lines including online lottery games plus terminal based games including keno and virtual sports. The products are being designed to bring in new players as well as younger gamers. The 20something crowd is not interested in the traditional lottery games as the older generation is.
With the introduction of online lottery games, players will be able to access the options via mobile devices. This will make lottery gaming more appealing to younger individuals. The budget plan discusses how other states have been able to see new lottery players created with the installation of online games.
With the monitor-based gaming options, players will be able to view a simulated sports event or a drawing for numbers. These games can be installed in taverns and bars, which are also expected to bring in new gamers. The budget plans have estimated that Pennsylvania will be able to earn an additional $150 million via revenues, with the money being used to fund programs for older residents of the state.
With the gaming package, there are several aspects of the gambling industry that are expected to expand in Pennsylvania. Along with online lottery ticket sales, the state is expected to offer online casino and poker gaming. It is taking iGaming via casinos and poker a lot longer to introduce than the lottery. The Gaming Control Board of the state has already posted regulations as well as applications in relation to iGaming but licensing fees for casinos to provide online gaming has yet to be taken in.
Once both online casinos and poker sites are launched alongside online lottery sales, Pennsylvania will become the first state in the US to offer online lottery games and slots. It will be interesting to see how the two compares and if both provides a nice increase of gaming revenues for the state.
As far as online lottery gaming is concerned, the state should be ready for games to become available by spring. The state took the online lottery product into consideration when perfecting their model. The state is also expected to offer virtual sports betting via lottery retailers. Wolf announced this addition last year, stating that the games will be created from sporting events that take place with computer software, allowing players to bet on the outcome of the virtual events.