The longest running, most popular lottery game in Idaho, Powerball, will continue to be offered in the Gem State. The Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL), the group who operates Powerball in North America, informed its members on April 20, 2021, including the Idaho Lottery, the decision to begin international sales of Powerball has been delayed until sometime in 2022. In a statement, the MUSL announced, “International sales of Powerball has been delayed. The issues of offering this game outside the United States are complex. There is no defined timeline for a decision, however, any decision will ultimately be determined by a vote of all 38 members of the Powerball Product Group.”
Idaho is a voting member of the Powerball Product Group.
“Freedom to play Powerball is restored. This is a game that Idahoans have enjoyed for three decades,” said Jeff Anderson, Idaho Lottery Director. “The voters of Idaho created the Lottery in 1989 after an initiative was placed on the ballot by the Idaho Legislature which received an affirmative vote of the people in the 1988 general election. Shortly thereafter, Idaho was one of the 13 original states that created Powerball in February 1992.”
The Lottery estimates 670,000 Idahoans enjoy playing Powerball every single year.
The March 10, 2021 announcement that Idaho would have to cease offering Powerball as early as August 2021 was due to a proposed change to current Idaho law that was rejected by a legislative committee. Since then, the Idaho Lottery has received an outpouring of public support for the game from players, retailers who sell lottery tickets, and the beneficiaries supported by Idaho Lottery dividends. Retailers earn about $1.5 million from the sale of Powerball tickets while the game delivers $14 million in dividends to Idaho public schools and buildings each year.
“We believe that international sales of Powerball are inevitable and Idaho law will have to be changed in 2022 for players to remain able to enjoy the world’s most popular lottery game.” added Anderson. “We will continue to responsibly work with the Idaho Legislature, our players, and our retailers to ensure Idahoans have the freedom to enjoy Powerball in Idaho.”