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California Lottery
Address: 600 North.10th St.
Sacramento, CA 95814
Phone: (800) 568-8379
Fax: (916) 737-5985
Population: 36.46 million
U.S. Census Bureau, Population Division
Director / CEO Hugo Lopez
Start - up: October 1985
Gross Sales FY2015
Gross Sales FY2016
$5.524 billion
Per Capita Sales: $116
Number of Employees: 644
Number of Retailers: 22,365
On-line Vendor: GTECH
Instant Ticket Vendor: Scientific Games
Games Offered: Mega Millions, Super Lotto plus, Fantasy 5, Daily 4, Daily 3, Daily derby, Scratch Tickets, Hot Spot, Raffle.“Make Me a Millionaire.” Game Show.
Advertsing: David & Goliath
Proceeds: All Lottery proceeds go to education.

Background Information


The California Lottery was created with a ballot measure in 1984, approved by 58 percent of voters. Ticket sales began on October 3, 1985, with an instant game called California Jackpot. In the first 24 hours, 21.4 million tickets were sold, and sales reached $1 billion after only four months.
The Lottery’s first draw game was Lotto 6/49, launched October 14, 1986. Today, draw game offerings include SuperLotto Plus, Mega Millions, Fantasy 5, Daily 4, Daily 3, Daily Derby and Hot Spot, a pari-mutuel version of fast-draw keno. By law, every lottery game in California must have a pari-mutuel prize structure.
A significant step forward was taken in April 2010, when the state Legislature approved a change in the Lottery Act that allowed the Lottery to use its discretion in setting prize payouts. Assembly Bill 142 allowed the Lottery to follow best practices around the industry to increase sales and therefore increase revenues to beneficiaries.
Under the original Lottery Act, education was mandated to receive 34 percent of sales, with administrative expenses capped at 16 percent of sales. AB 142 changed those requirements and set an expense cap of 13 percent, with prizes and education contributions making up the remaining 87 percent. The Lottery now has the flexibility to pay out a higher percentage of its revenues in prizes than it has in the past, but only if it does so in a way that increases the total amount of money that goes to public schools and colleges. These changes paved the way for a significant increase in sales.
The Lottery’s primary mission is to provide supplemental funding for public schools and colleges. It generates more than $1 billion annually in revenue for education, distributed as follows:

  • 63 percent goes to salaries and benefits for educators, helping school districts fund class-size reduction programs and hire classroom aids, nurses, school psychologists and specialists.
  • 20 percent is used to purchase instructional materials for the classroom, including textbooks, classroom supplies, computers and software, library books and laboratory equipment.
  • 17 percent supports other educational programs and services.


News Archive for CY2021
May 14, 2021 The California State Lottery Deploys New Retail-Facing System
March 30, 2021 California Lottery Mishandled Scratchers Giveaway on ‘Ellen’ Show, State Review Finds

News Archive for CY2020
October 08, 2020 California Lottery to Recoup Improper Expense Payments to Employees
June 19, 2020 Shortage in California Lottery Scratch-Tickets Caused by the Coronavirus could Cost the State Millions in Lost Revenue
January 14, 2020 California Lottery Wins Another Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting Award

News Archive for CY2019
April 9, 2019 Audit of California Lottery Reveal Spending "Irregularities"
March 25, 2019 California Lottery Official Dismissed Amid Investigations
February 27, 2019 California Lottery Tests 'Instant Winnings' in Sacramento

News Archive for CY2018
October 9, 2018 Lottery Settles Lawsuits with Two Former Security Staff
September 20, 2018 Lottery Commission Hears Allegations Into Hiring Practices and Misconduct by Senior Department Executives
June 22, 2018 Lottery Thieves Force Lottery to Implement New Procedures to Activate Scratchers
June 11, 2018 Updated App Lets You Check-A-Ticket Using Your Cell Phone to See If You’ve Won!

News Archive for CY2017
July 28, 2017 California State Lottery Issues RFP for Lead Agency Advertising Services
July 21, 2017 Man Sues California Lottery for Not Honouring Winning $5M Scratcher
April 3, 2017 California Lottery Goes Large with Super Scratcher Campaign from David&Goliath
March 9, 2017 More Winners Prompts Delays in Lottery Payouts
February 10, 2017 Survey Reveals Fewer Millennials Line Up to Play the Lottery

News Archive for CY2016
July 11, 2016 Record-Setting Year for the California Lottery
February 3, 2016 Player Files Lawsuit to Claim $63 Million Lotto Jackpot


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