Today, the Florida Lottery (Lottery) celebrates its 35th year in operation, marking three and a half decades of excitement, achievements, and contributions to education.
“It’s been an exciting 35 years, and we are celebrating with a renewed focus on our education mission and commitment to providing fun and entertaining games for our players so that Florida’s students will continue to benefit for years to come,” said Lottery Secretary John F. Davis. “The Lottery would not be the industry trailblazer it is today without our loyal players, hardworking retailer and vendor partners, and dedicated employees. I look forward to what lies ahead for the Lottery and have no doubt that it will be filled with exciting games, more winners, and ample opportunities to build brighter futures for Florida’s students, families, and communities.”
Since opening its doors in 1988, the Lottery has contributed more than $43 billion to education, including more than $1 billion annually for each of the past 21 consecutive fiscal years. Most recently, the Lottery exceeded $2 billion in education contributions during Fiscal Year 2021-22.
The benefit of these Lottery revenues can be felt in communities across Florida at every education level – from K-12 programs to state colleges and universities, and even the Bright Futures Scholarship Program. As the primary funding source for the Bright Futures Scholarship, the Lottery has enabled more than 950,000 students to achieve their dream of a higher education since the program’s inception in 1997.
A portion of every Lottery purchase is transferred to the Educational Enhancement Trust Fund (EETF). These funds are then appropriated by the Florida Legislature and administered by the Florida Department of Education.
HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE PAST 35 YEARS:
- January 12, 1988: Ticket sales begin for Florida’s first Scratch-Off game, MILLIONAIRE.
- February 15, 1988: The Lottery makes its first transfer to the EETF in the amount of $46.26 million.
- July 1, 1997: Lottery-funded Bright Futures Scholarships are made available for Florida students.
- May 12, 2000: Lottery education contributions reach $10 billion, making Florida the first state Lottery to reach this milestone in beneficiary funding.
- May 20, 2009: Lottery education contributions reach $20 billion since inception.
- June 30, 2022: Fiscal Year 2021-22 ends with record-breaking sales and contributions to education. Total sales exceeded $9.32 billion resulting in more than $2.3 billion for education.
- December 7, 2022: The Lottery’s total education contributions reach more than $43 billion since 1988.
For a complete list of Lottery milestones, click here.
ABOUT THE FLORIDA LOTTERY
The Florida Lottery is responsible for contributing more than $43 billion to enhance education and sending more than 950,000 students to college through the Bright Futures Scholarship Program. The Florida Lottery reinvests 99 percent of its revenue back into Florida’s economy through prize payouts, commissions to more than 13,000 Lottery retailers, and transfers to education. Since 1988, Florida Lottery games have paid more than $85.1 billion in prizes and made more than 3,500 people millionaires. For more information, please visit www.flalottery.com.