At $20, it'll be the most expensive ticket to go on sale in the short history of the state lottery. The odds are a whole lot better than Powerball, and the prize is a cool $1 million.
A raffle — a favorite fundraising tool of school parent groups and peewee sports teams — could be coming to the North Carolina Education Lottery.
"It's the kind of game that appeals to people," said lottery chief Tom Shaheen.
The state lottery commission will consider adding the raffle to its lineup at its meeting Tuesday.
Instead of selling paper tickets from a roll, retailers will sell 500,000 numbers through the lottery's computer network. With four grand prizes of $1 million, a $20 ticket will carry a 1-in-125,000 chance of winning the top prize. The odds of buying a winning Powerball ticket: 1-in-146,107,962.
"It's about as good as it's going to get to win $1 million," Shaheen said.
The current plan calls for five additional winners of $100,000 and 500 winners of $1,000. Still, 99.89 percent of the tickets would be losers.
Shaheen is suggesting the raffle tickets go on sale in May, with the winning numbers drawn on the Fourth of July. The state's haul from the game would include roughly $3.5 million for education programs.
The raffle idea isn't a new one. Such games were among the first lotteries played in the Colonial-era United States, and a raffle helped build the South Building at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Other state lotteries have also run raffles, and in most cases, tickets have sold out.