State Lottery Puts Up Dismal Numbers for Second Month in a Row

This week the Arkansas Lottery released its financial reports for the month of August.

The report shows that the Arkansas Lottery took in nearly $40.9 million last month, but paid less than $5 million to college scholarships — about 12% of all the money the Arkansas Lottery made.

In July, the Lottery set aside only $4.5 million for scholarships, making it one of the Lottery’s worst months since 2014.

August was one of the Arkansas Lottery’s top 20 months from the past five years when it came to gross revenue. But August was the Arkansas Lottery’s fifth worst month in the past five years when it came to college scholarships.

In other words, lottery revenue appears to be just fine, but the Lottery Office isn’t budgeting very much money for college scholarships.

The Arkansas Lottery is notorious for putting other priorities ahead of the scholarships it is supposed to fund, but the Lottery Office is only two months into Fiscal Year 2020, and already its scholarship budget is near a five-year low.

Below is a breakdown of Lottery revenue and scholarship funding so far this fiscal year.

Month Gross Lottery Revenue Paid to Scholarships % Gross Revenue
July $41,239,173.79 $4,523,930.75 11.0%
August 40,899,086.75 4,942,736.97 12.1%
Total $82,138,260.54 $9,466,667.72 11.5%

Below is a look at lottery revenue and scholarship funding since Fiscal Year 2015.

Month Gross Lottery Revenue Paid to Scholarships % Gross Revenue
July, 2014 30,925,067.43 5,928,447.99 19.17%
August, 2014 31,571,412.10 5,296,965.80 16.78%
September, 2014 30,710,493.31 4,317,227.10 14.06%
October, 2014 32,959,739.29 5,939,625.59 18.02%
November, 2014 30,617,278.28 5,577,035.16 18.22%
December, 2014 34,507,731.54 5,474,318.77 15.86%
January, 2015 35,433,619.67 7,287,773.28 20.57%
February, 2015 41,770,314.46 6,161,343.01 14.75%
March, 2015 37,367,453.25 6,898,524.35 18.46%
April, 2015 33,866,970.54 5,881,005.95 17.37%
May, 2015 35,689,036.10 5,409,050.48 15.16%
June, 2015 33,815,559.59 8,278,928.14 24.48%
July, 2015 31,665,651.14 5,784,683.09 18.27%
August, 2015 31,265,177.55 5,490,094.00 17.56%
September, 2015 36,134,389.63 6,624,967.11 18.33%
October, 2015 35,261,533.80 6,020,642.32 17.07%
November, 2015 32,226,599.28 5,725,139.09 17.77%
December, 2015 38,670,746.09 6,425,754.66 16.62%
January, 2016 58,746,249.00 13,831,359.75 23.54%
February, 2016 40,790,144.05 4,474,356.06 10.97%
March, 2016 40,579,421.05 5,758,892.84 14.19%
April, 2016 37,516,802.47 7,392,837.00 19.71%
May, 2016 38,485,146.05 6,606,164.94 17.17%
June, 2016 34,983,951.24 11,249,220.37 32.16%
July, 2016 38,237,293.92 8,714,386.39 22.79%
August, 2016 35,091,022.09 5,498,714.86 15.67%
September, 2016 33,113,391.64 5,773,076.42 17.43%
October, 2016 34,061,993.14 5,165,040.54 15.16%
November, 2016 37,042,079.72 6,570,979.51 17.74%
December, 2016 35,352,159.35 4,596,532.22 13.00%
January, 2017 37,062,291.39 7,947,546.21 21.44%
February, 2017 41,176,854.60 6,698,099.62 16.27%
March, 2017 43,405,541.56 6,204,704.75 14.29%
April, 2017 38,671,617.14 7,845,827.56 20.29%
May, 2017 38,185,263.61 7,068,770.18 18.51%
June, 2017 38,517,227.85 13,193,652.18 34.25%
July, 2017 36,885,396.81 6,661,762.99 18.06%
August, 2017 49,320,459.23 8,912,741.54 18.07%
September, 2017 36,405,731.14 6,755,333.93 18.56%
October, 2017 39,802,740.53 5,667,305.74 14.24%
November, 2017 36,186,107.78 6,691,228.00 18.49%
December, 2017 44,716,219.32 6,583,355.77 14.72%
January, 2018 44,063,056.11 8,230,861.00 18.68%
February, 2018 39,389,927.57 5,947,647.50 15.10%
March, 2018 53,523,320.61 7,945,570.02 14.85%
April, 2018 42,064,194.78 7,192,997.10 17.10%
May, 2018 40,447,182.69 8,037,624.80 19.87%
June, 2018 37,685,874.97 13,364,612.64 35.46%
July, 2018 42,413,352.70 5,066,628.73 11.95%
August, 2018 40,343,279.62 6,175,998.40 15.31%
September, 2018 35,198,809.72 7,783,450.82 22.11%
October, 2018 57,575,285.62 11,259,040.31 19.56%
November, 2018 37,700,016.00 6,821,411.01 18.09%
December, 2018 45,859,642.73 6,650,791.54 14.50%
January, 2019 40,574,813.28 7,848,495.62 19.34%
February, 2019 41,060,111.75 8,198,257.31 19.97%
March, 2019 51,988,380.67 8,552,307.04 16.45%
April, 2019 43,951,257.94 8,176,383.34 18.60%
May, 2019 41,158,346.08 8,396,193.42 20.40%
June, 2019 38,413,526.87 13,482,789.59 35.10%
July, 2019 41,239,173.79 4,523,930.75 10.97%
August, 2019 40,899,086.75 4,942,736.97 12.09%

Arkansas Lottery Still a Failure: March Report

Earlier this month the Arkansas Lottery released its financial report for March.

The report shows the Arkansas Lottery took in nearly $52 million, but paid out only a little over $8.5 million for college scholarships — about 16.5% of all the money it made.

For perspective, the typical state lottery gives education programs about 30% of the money it makes. Louisiana’s lottery spends 35%.

During the recent legislative session, lawmakers rejected two proposals that would have incrementally increased the percentage of lottery revenue students receive to 25% by the year 2025.

Below is a breakdown of lottery revenue and scholarship spending so far this fiscal year.

Month Gross Lottery Revenue Paid to Scholarships % Gross Revenue
July $42,413,352.70 $5,066,628.73 11.9%
August 40,343,279.62 6,175,998.40 15.3%
September 35,198,809.72 7,783,450.82 22.1%
October 57,575,285.62 11,259,040.31 19.6%
November 37,700,016.00 6,821,411.01 18.1%
December 45,859,642.73 6,650,791.54 14.5%
January, 2019 40,574,813.28 7,848,495.62 19.3%
February 41,060,111.75 8,198,257.31 20.0%
March 51,988,380.67 8,552,307.04 16.5%
Total $392,713,692.09 $68,356,380.78 17.4%

Legislature Begins Looking at Two Key Bills During the Interim

This week the Arkansas Legislature moved forward with plans to look at two key pieces of legislation between now and 2019.

The first is S.B. 583 by Senator Joyce Elliott. The legislature will study the feasibility of requiring 25% of lottery proceeds to fund scholarships; reinstating the 2.5 GPA requirement to be eligible for scholarships; and having independent consultants for the Arkansas Lottery.

The second is S.B. 774, the privacy bill by Senator Linda Collins-Smith. This bill would have required a person using a public shower, locker room, restroom, or similar facility on government property to use the facility that corresponds to the biological sex listed on his or her original birth certificate. The legislature will study this issue in the months to come.

Lawmakers cannot pass these bills during the interim study period, but can research these issues, collect testimony, and present recommendations when the Arkansas Legislature reconvenes as a whole.

We are glad lawmakers have agreed to look at these two issues during the interim. The next step is to schedule meetings where experts, members of the public, and others can testify at the Capitol.