—The House of Representatives today approved legislation authored by Rep. Thomas Murt (R-Montgomery/Philadelphia), chairman of the House Aging and Older Adult Services Committee, to increase lottery profits by lowering the rate of return of lottery games. The increased profits would go to programs for seniors that are funded by the Pennsylvania Lottery.
“This change is important in order to ensure the lottery has enough revenue to continue to fund necessary programs benefiting a dramatically growing population of older Pennsylvanians,” said Murt.
Act 201 of 2014
reduced the mandated rate of return from 27% to 25%. This relief gave the lottery the ability to update products in order to meet consumer demand and maximize profits for programs benefiting older Pennsylvanians. As the lottery system continues to try to increase ticket sales to increase revenues available for senior programs, it has requested an additional reduction of the statutorily mandated rate of return beginning in Fiscal Year 2019.
Murt’s House Bill 956
would temporarily reduce the rate of return to 20% for the next five fiscal years until June 30, 2024.
“Lowering the percentage of game payouts allows the lottery to increase profits by not restricting how much the lottery can sell of certain games, especially high-profit games like scratch-offs,” Murt said.
The lottery sets the game payouts based on the statutorily mandated rate of return months in advance. By changing the mandated rate of return now, it provides the lottery with the ability to prepare the future game portfolio to maximize profits.
House Bill 956 now goes to the Senate for consideration.
Representative Thomas P. Murt, Ed.D.
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: David Foster