Hoping gas prizes help fuel lottery

July 10, 2008 4:26:06 AM PDT
A California state senator hopes to pump up the lottery's coffers by expanding prize offerings to include free gas.

Democrat Dean Florez says in a letter Wednesday to the California Lottery that such an offer would entice more people to buy lottery tickets. He argues that would raise more money for schools because they are funded partially by the lottery.

But Lottery Director Joan Borucki says California can't afford to award free gasoline. That's because state law restricts how much lottery money can go toward prizes.

Gas prices are soaring to $5 a gallon throughout California.