New Wyoming State Lottery; Retailer Application Available May 21

By Tracee Davis, The Sheridan Press, May 15, 2014. Reprinted with permission.

Jon Clontz - WyoLotto CEORetailers around the state will start selling lottery tickets in about three months and, starting next Wednesday [May 21], Wyoming businesses interested in becoming vendors can submit an application for consideration as a retailer. 

Wyoming Lottery CEO Jon Clontz was the featured speaker at this week’s Sheridan County Chamber of Commerce monthly luncheon, and he provided an overview of the developmental process for the state’s new lottery.

Lottery games were authorized in the state of as last July, and in that time frame, Clontz and a board of nine members have secured startup funds, created a logo and marketing campaign for the privatized state agency, identified a company to oversee core competencies of the games and conducted statewide retailer training and recruitment events.

Work yet to be done includes screening retailers for qualifications to sell the tickets so that hardware and software can be delivered to identified retail locations and staff can be trained.

Clontz said he plans to have between 400 and 450 retail sites sell lottery tickets for both the national Powerball and Mega Millions drawings. Those sales alone are anticipated to bring in $14-17 million within the first year. Retailers will keep 6 percent of sales profits. After the lottery corporation pays out prizes and operational costs, the first $6 million in revenue goes to municipalities in the state. Beyond that, the money goes to the state’s Permanent Land Fund’s Common School Account.

Clontz said the promise of in-state revenue retention was a big selling point to the legislators, but expectations regarding how the money will change the state government are minimized at this point.

“The governor made it clear this effort is being done so that money stays in Wyoming providing improvement. “It’s not plugging a hole,” Clontz said, pointing out the contrast between other states that have grown dependent on revenue from the lottery as a public funding source.

Clontz added that the lottery intends to maintain a simultaneous informational campaign about problem gambling along with Wyoming Lottery products. Each ticket, he said, will have an 800-number to call if gambling addiction is suspected.

The go-live date for ticket sales will be August 24.

For more information and the retailer application, see http://wyolotto.com.

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