Sales of Wisconsin Lottery tickets are down a little over 3-percent.
A state audit shows almost 493 million tickets sold in the 2006-07 fiscal year generated 16-million dollars less than those of the previous year. Andrew Bohage with the Wisconsin Lottery attributes the decrease to the Powerball.
"When we have large jackpots … that we have a number of them in any given fiscal year we can be assured that our sales are going to be in pretty good shape. When we have a year that we don't have as many big jackpots, we don't generate the same kind of sales from Powerball."
The annual financial review by the Legislative Audit Bureau also found that the Wisconsin Lottery was in compliance with statutory spending limitations related to prizes, retailer compensation, administrative expenses and product informational advertising, which Bohage knows has long been criticized.
"We can advertise by law and what we do to make sure that we adhere to the law is we have every single advertising concept that we come up with vetted by state attorneys to make sure that it is in compliance and that we don't step over a line."
According to the audit, $292-million in prizes were paid out in fiscal year 2006-07. Total operating expenses increased 13.6% over the past five fiscal years.
Bohage notes, in the year that ended on June 30, 2007, lottery proceeds for property tax relief increased. "Property tax relief during the time period in question there actually went up from $120-million to $145-million, so that's very good news."
Since its inception in 1988, the Wisconsin Lottery has provided $2.6 billion in property tax relief.