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Arkansas Scholarship Lottery posts best October revenue since same month in 2011


LITTLE ROCK, Arkansas — The Arkansas Scholarship Lottery has shown some of its strongest October ticket sales since 2011.

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette (http://bit.ly/1SlVp4k ) reported Thursday that the lottery had just over $35 million in sales and a yield of $6 million for college scholarships in the month of October. In October 2011, the lottery said it had revenue of nearly $38 million and $8 million raised for scholarships.

According to lottery Director Bishop Woosley, lower gas prices and scratch-off ticket sales are the reason for the increase in revenue.

"In addition to low gas prices, the strategies that we put into place over the last year and a half for our products, advertising and marketing and retail execution continue to help grow sales in the (scratch-off ticket) category," Woosley said in a statement Tuesday.

He said that scratch-off sales have increased during 13 of the past 16 months. The number of stores selling lottery tickets has risen by 23 from 1,905 a year ago.

Lottery revenue and net proceeds for college scholarships have dipped in each of the past three fiscal years.

Woosley, revenue in fiscal year 2016 is projected to be $411 million with nearly $80 million in scholarship proceeds. Woosley said the lottery is about $370,000 ahead of its budget for scholarship proceeds for fiscal 2016.

The director said that whether projections are met depends on several factors, but he is encouraged by what he sees.

Information from: Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, http://www.arkansasonline.com

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