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With multistate, mega jackpots, State Lotto revenue is falling


New York's venerable twice-weekly Lotto drawing continues its long-term decline in an age of multistate mega jackpots.


Even as overall lottery revenues grew, receipts from Lotto dropped from $137.5 million in 2005 to a projected $44 million for the state fiscal year ending March 31. That's according to Gov. Andrew Cuomo's recent budget proposal.


Players and analysts say Lotto is simply less alluring than the six-figure jackpots of Powerball and Mega Millions, which are sold around the nation.


Lotto was introduced as a pick-your-own numbers game in 1978, and an early jackpot was $250,000. A state lottery report from 1983 notes that Lotto's popularity was slow in coming, "but once it did the success was phenomenal."


Lotto now represents a small slice of the state's lottery revenue.

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