FRANKLIN, N.H. — A New Hampshire city on Tuesday became the first to approve the Keno lottery game as a way to raise money for full-day kindergarten.

The Concord Monitor reports (http://bit.ly/2xizLhD) Franklin voters approved the measure 397-262 during city elections.

The city also was the first to put a measure on a ballot that allows residents to choose if they want to allow keno at drinking establishments.

Their votes came after the Legislature legalized the game as a way to fund full-day kindergarten programs statewide. The law stipulates the game will only be allowed in cities and towns that approve it.

The majority of the money spent on the Keno game will go to education. The state lottery commission says the locations will keep 8 percent of every dollar spent on the game.

Lottery commission officials estimate Keno could raise 443 million for education.

Eight locations in Franklin have liquor licenses that qualify them to allow Keno, a game similar to an electronic form of bingo. It’s now up to vendors who qualify to arrange for the Keno machines to be installed.

“I told them I’m willing to be a test mule, if they need it,” said Jim Gale, the owner of JJ’s Wood-Fired Pizza in Franklin. “We’re very excited.”

Other cities are planning to put the measure on the November election ballot. Portsmouth rejected a motion to put it on the ballot, but residents could still petition for it.

Some critics of Keno have said it will take money from those who can least afford it.


Information from: Concord Monitor, http://www.concordmonitor.com