Most of us won't win the lottery, but here's who still benefits

Maggie Kent Image
Thursday, May 20, 2021
Most of us won't win the lottery, but here's who still benefits
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Very few people will win the lottery, but there are plenty of Pennsylvania residents who benefit from every drawing.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- With Mega Millions and Powerball reaching eye-popping jackpots, would-be millionaires are lining up to get their tickets.

If you're one of them, you might want to try buying a ticket from the Sunoco at Lancaster and Wynnewood in Philadelphia.

"We sold five different tickets - over a million dollar tickets - over the years," said gas station owner Phurram Aijaz.

Last week they sold a $50,000 winner.

Now that the Mega Millions jackpot has climbed to $515 million and the Powerball stands at more than $200 million, it's fun to dream.

"If I can win, I can invest it, build a house, and start a foundation for low-income students," said Donita Nero of Maple Shade, NJ.

But not all of the money that goes into the lottery gets paid out in the jackpot. So where does the rest go?

In Pennsylvania, 65% is paid out to winners.

The next large chunk, 24%, goes to benefit older residents in Pennsylvania. Those who sell the tickets get a cut at 7.4%

The last portion, less than 3%, funds the lottery's operating costs.

For the 2019-2020 year, senior programs in Philadephia alone received $309,805,212 from the Pennsylvania Lottery.

"Property tax, rent rebates, transportation care services, prescription assistance and local services, including senior centers and meals," said Ewa Swope, press secretary for the Pennsylvania Lottery.

Agencies on Aging and senior centers received $59,567,193.

The PACE prescription assistance program got $10,393,865.

The Shared and Free Ride programs from PennDOT received $70,153,231.

The property tax and rent rebates fund got $34,800,559.

The Department of Human Services Care Services Program received $134,890,364.

The drawing for the Mega Millions is Friday, Powerball is Saturday, you can also buy tickets online!