North American Association of State and Provincial Lotteries Where the Money Goes
Gregory Edgar
Gregory Edgar
Executive Director

Arizona Lottery

  • 2,999
    Retailers
  • $484,558,815
    Prizes Paid to Players
  • $870,945,825
    Sales
  • $205,688,683
    Transfers to Beneficiaries
* Information displayed reflects data collected for fiscal year 2016

Lottery Impact on the Economy

  • In Arizona, 2,999 retailers generated $870,945,825 in gross sales.
  • This economic activity generated $205,688,683 in transfers to beneficiaries.
  • $484,558,815 was awarded to players in prizes.

History of Arizona Lottery

The expansion of lotteries into the American West began with Arizona, the first state west of Mississippi to legalize the games. Voter approval was narrow in November 1980, with just a 51-49 margin, but the Arizona Lottery has become an integral part of the Arizona culture. Subsequent votes as the Lottery came up for sunset review were much more definitive; most recently an overwhelming 73 percent of voters approved a 10-year lottery extension in 2002. In 2010, the Legislature passed a bill ensuring the Lottery will continue until 2035.

Ticket sales began over the July 4 weekend in 1981 with an instant game, Scratch It Rich, and its 21.4 million tickets sold out in 10 days, a phenomenal success for the fledgling lottery. Instant games continued to make up the Lottery’s entire product mix until 1984, when its first draw game, the popular lotto game The Pick, was introduced. 

By statute, proceeds from the Arizona Lottery are divided among numerous programs in four specific areas: education, health and public welfare, economic and business development, and the environment. Along with General Fund revenues earmarked for these programs, dedicated beneficiaries include Healthy Arizona, the Heritage Fund in the Department of Game and Fish, the Commerce Authority, the University Capital Improvement Bond Fund, the Homeless Emergency/Transitional Shelters program and the Court Appointed Special Advocate Program for children. Lottery revenues also help pay for the state’s problem gambling hotline.

Today, education and health and public welfare combined receive the lion’s share of lottery revenues.

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