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ND Lottery to mark 20 years

In 2002, North Dakota voters approved the lottery.

It began operations in 2004. That means it celebrates its 20th anniversary this year.

In those 20 years of life, the Lottery has awarded $179 million in prizes to winners all across the state," Lottery director Lance Gaebe told the Legislature's interim Judiciary Committee.

The state Lottery offers five games, including Powerball and Mega Millions — two national games that have had multi-million dollar jackpots. However, no North Dakota lottery player has won the big jackpot.

Gaebe told the Committee in 2022, the lottery sold $30 million worth of tickets – and in 2023, $40 million of tickets were sold. That was a record for the lottery.

"That was partly due to the big jackpots," Gaebe said. "You might remember a better-than $2 billion jackpot, and a $1.3 billion dollar jackpot. It's a fact of life that people are much more interested in the lottery when the jackpots are big. $500 million isn't enough, but $2 billion sure does."

Gaebe said since the lottery has been operating, $124 million has gone into the state general fund, $4.9 million into compulsive gambling treatment, $8.2 million into the multi-jurisdictional drug task force, and $2.8 million into a state litigation fund.

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