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Tenn. Lottery CEO blames lagging sales on Powerball

Tennessee LotteryTennessee Lottery: Tenn. Lottery CEO blames lagging sales on Powerball
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Tennessee officials are hedging their bets on Powerball to lift the lottery out of a sales slump that could hurt revenue projections for education.

Lottery CEO Rebecca Paul Hargrove says lottery sales have been running about $400,000 less per week than last year since the fiscal year began July 1.

She blames Powerball.  The jackpot went over $300 million at one point last year but hasn't reached that level yet this year.  Bigger jackpots increase sales.

The Knoxville News Sentinel reports the lottery chief told Gov. Phil Bredesen in budget sessions Monday in Nashville that the lottery is now projecting about $288.6 million in revenues for education this fiscal year.

That's about $2.5 million more than last year, but about $3.5 million less than earlier estimates.

In 2007, despite complaints from legions of upset lottery players, Hargrove decided to change the Tennessee Lottery drawings from a mechanical ball machine to a computer random number generator (RNG).  Subsequently, the lottery was embroiled in criticism over a string of faulty drawings and errors, resulting from the computerized drawing system.

Hargrove claims that it would cost the lottery $5 million to revert back to the real drawings, but some say the lottery has cost the state more than that with the errors and loss in player confidence.

Some legislators recognized that the computerized drawings were hurting the player's confidence in the games and introduced legislation to revert back to real drawings.  (See Tennessee Lottery may be forced back to real drawings, Oct. 9, 2007, and Tenn. lawmakers want to force lottery to drop computer draws, Mar. 26, 2008.)

But the State Senate never took up the measure that was championed by House Minority Leader Jason Mumpower, and the proposal was withdrawn in April (Tenn. proposal for real lottery drawings withdrawn, Apr. 30, 2008).

Now, with revenue shortfalls again facing the state, Tennessee lawmakers need to decide if the lottery's revenue projections will remain at the whim of Powerball jackpots, or if they will proactively generate player excitement — and increased revenues — by bringing real drawings back to the state.

The residents of the state also need to decide if they will take matters into their own hands, by contacting their state representatives and demanding that real mechnical ball drawings be reinstated in Tennessee.

The Tennessee Lottery stopped using real drawings in 2007.

Lottery Post Staff

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53 comments. Last comment 8 years ago by itsmyhouse.
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DC81's avatar - batman39
MI
United States
Member #54830
August 31, 2007
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Posted: November 18, 2008, 5:42 pm - IP Logged

Ahh, just like these sort of clowns, blame one thing while completely ignoring the other, bigger issue....

I'm sure Powerball cut into some sales, but all those problems with the RNG and their brilliant giving out the wrong phone number certainly didn't give customers a boost of confidence in how competent the people in charge of the state lotteries are.

You can't predict random.


    United States
    Member #60337
    April 14, 2008
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    Posted: November 18, 2008, 6:16 pm - IP Logged

    The Powerball has nothing to do with the drawings.Of course she has to blame it on someone.The fine folks in Tennessee have been waiting on this,now the last laugh is on her.Cant wait till they come and say,,,,,,What you gonna do when they come for you,bad boys.!!!!!!!!  oh yea with all these losing tickets I have stacked up in the cabinet are actually good? Who knows....

      MADDOG10's avatar - smoke
      Beautiful Florida
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      Posted: November 18, 2008, 7:23 pm - IP Logged

      Boy, she still can't see past her nose....!

      Powerball may have cut into some, but not 400,000 less per week. WAKE UP and smell the coffee Mrs Hardnose. The good folks in Tenn don't deserve to be bilked the way you're doing it with computers. Get some Balls Rebecca, then maybe the revenue will go back up. Tah Tah dolling......!

                                                   

                                                     " You can not control the Wind, but you can direct the Sail "


        United States
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        Posted: November 18, 2008, 7:28 pm - IP Logged

        Well said MADDOG   With a 10

          Littleoldlady's avatar - basket
          Clarksville
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          Posted: November 18, 2008, 8:16 pm - IP Logged

          That is amazing.  I watched her on the news last night and this morning and she clearly stated that she thought it was the high cost of gasoline that had cut into sales of lottery tickets.  she also stated that she thought that with gas prices coming down that the lottery would be able to make more money possibly getting to the amount of money they were making before all of the gas hikes.  Well, whatever, it remains to be seen. I am sure player confidence does have something to do with the shortfall.

          If you know your number is going to hit, have patience and then KILL IT!

          You never know when you will get another hit.

            time*treat's avatar - radar

            United States
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            Posted: November 18, 2008, 8:44 pm - IP Logged

            "The Knoxville News Sentinel reports the lottery chief told Gov. PhilBredesen in budget sessions Monday in Nashville that the lottery is nowprojecting about $288.6 million in revenues for education this fiscalyear."

            That may be less than expected, but it's no small amount. If TN players want real drawings back, drop that number till the decimal point threatens to move.

            In neo-conned Amerika, bank robs you.
            Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms should be the name of a convenience store, not a govnoment agency.

              Avatar
              NASHVILLE, TENN
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              February 20, 2006
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              Posted: November 18, 2008, 8:45 pm - IP Logged

              I, for one, have quit playing Tennessee's lottory since they went to the RNG method.  I have no confidence in any official of this state doing right, be they Republicans or Democrats.  In my book, computerized drawings were introduced to make mainpulation easier and more difficult to uncover.  I will keep my money in my wallet until they bring back ball drawings.  If that means I never get to lay $1 down on the Pick 5 again, then so be it.  I am finding that I don't have a problem not having a ticket for the next draw.

                Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
                Chief Bottle Washer
                New Jersey
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                Posted: November 18, 2008, 8:49 pm - IP Logged

                I, for one, have quit playing Tennessee's lottory since they went to the RNG method.  I have no confidence in any official of this state doing right, be they Republicans or Democrats.  In my book, computerized drawings were introduced to make mainpulation easier and more difficult to uncover.  I will keep my money in my wallet until they bring back ball drawings.  If that means I never get to lay $1 down on the Pick 5 again, then so be it.  I am finding that I don't have a problem not having a ticket for the next draw.

                I think there are many people like you. 

                I really feel bad for you, because you all had the carpet ripped from under your feet with no warning or opportunity to voice you opinion.  What the lottery did was just plain wrong.  It's not what you signed up for.

                It's awesome that you are voicing your opinion with your wallet, because that is the ONLY thing they care about.

                Look how big this story is in Tennessee.  Normally the annual financial updates from the lottery get scant attention.  But because Hargrove missed the target, this became a much bigger story.  Keep making her miss until she gives you back your drawings.

                If you normally buy 2 tickets a draw, just buy 1.  Or, like you're doing, buy none.

                 

                Check the State Lottery Report Card
                What grade did your lottery earn?

                 

                Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
                Help eliminate computerized drawings!

                  konane's avatar - wallace
                  Atlanta, GA
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                  Posted: November 18, 2008, 9:04 pm - IP Logged

                  Boy, she still can't see past her nose....!

                  Powerball may have cut into some, but not 400,000 less per week. WAKE UP and smell the coffee Mrs Hardnose. The good folks in Tenn don't deserve to be bilked the way you're doing it with computers. Get some Balls Rebecca, then maybe the revenue will go back up. Tah Tah dolling......!

                  Well stated Maddog, completely agree. 

                  If Hargrove is true to form she's managing the TN Lottery with the same greedy tactics she used in Georgia.  Looks like it's coming back to bite her, hope it takes a much bigger chunk before it's over. 

                  Good luck to everyone!


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                    Posted: November 18, 2008, 11:01 pm - IP Logged

                    Like I said what goes around comes around.And I do hope she reads all of this that we all write.I would love to see her retire,she has not only my money but all of Tennessee people .We all across the united states work hard,not just us in Tennessee but every one.Do you think for a minute she cares if we have food to eat or gas in our cars or what we need for our families,,,,well   $%^*)  no she dont.I'm keeping my hard earned money,I dont know the way the rest of you work but most of the time I'm working 7 days a week,and it feels D%^*() M  good to have my money for me.......CHERYL

                      spy153's avatar - maren

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                      Posted: November 18, 2008, 11:19 pm - IP Logged

                      That is amazing.  I watched her on the news last night and this morning and she clearly stated that she thought it was the high cost of gasoline that had cut into sales of lottery tickets.  she also stated that she thought that with gas prices coming down that the lottery would be able to make more money possibly getting to the amount of money they were making before all of the gas hikes.  Well, whatever, it remains to be seen. I am sure player confidence does have something to do with the shortfall.

                      That is my personal opinion why the lottery sales have come down.  I'm sure the jackpots on Powerball have something to do with it as well., but mostly the gas prices, economy instability, etc.,  As far as confidence levels from the consumer, well, can you blame them?  The computerized drawings?  Remember, most people don't "trust" computers and the internet anyway.   Oh, let me clarify that, most people I know.  Not any of you here, of course.  But throw that in the mix with seemingly fixed draws and bloopers like with the triples, and there you have it!  No sales! 

                      I too, feel that if the gas prices stay down the economy will pick back up.  We have to suffer the last waves of the dominoe effect from the price hikes., then maybe we can get back to normal around this nation already.

                      voir-vous dans mes reves!Cool

                        diamondpalace's avatar - Untitled 2.jpg
                        Dallas, TX
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                        Posted: November 18, 2008, 11:58 pm - IP Logged

                        Wow, another bad story from Tenn lotto. With errors like these people are loosing confidence in the lotto headquarter, not in themselves. Get real Tenn lotto if you want to make money you need to offer people a chance to win it, let the odds do the selection, not insiders. I have a feeling that this will happen few more times, at least once more before 2009. Investigation will take place eventually...those that walked away with great sums from this mess will soon be thinking about how not to drop the soap, rather than which super car to buy.

                          LOTTOMIKE's avatar - Lottery-063.jpg
                          Tennessee
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                          Posted: November 19, 2008, 12:13 am - IP Logged

                          i meant to tell you guys this about pick 4.remember back a few years ago i was hitting the pick 4 three or four times a year?   since the middle of 2007 until now i've played on paper and guess how many times i've hit since they went to RNG here in tennessee?        0  times.  thats right not once.soooooo what i'm doing is keeping fingers crossed about arkansas and if those guys want to play fair and do ball draws i'll just take my business there.i honestly expected a small mistake by our lottery here every now and then but when i got up one morning and saw on here the headline in the news section about tennessee going to RNG i was hit with total shock.tennessee had one of the best lotteries in the nation before this idiot decided to she was going to RNG the lottery.and can you believe the reason was because she said the workers were complaining about setting the ball machines up every day,lol.they quoted that idiot rebecca paul saying that.if thats the case then those people should've been fired and replaced.heck i would've took the job myself and set 'em up.i'm counting on you arkansas.

                           

                          p.s.... todd what do you think about me getting with the media in arkansas and showing these guys over there all the bad screwups tennessee has had by using computer draws.maybe spreading the word before hand could do some good.

                            Todd's avatar - Cylon 2.gif
                            Chief Bottle Washer
                            New Jersey
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                            Posted: November 19, 2008, 12:31 am - IP Logged

                            i meant to tell you guys this about pick 4.remember back a few years ago i was hitting the pick 4 three or four times a year?   since the middle of 2007 until now i've played on paper and guess how many times i've hit since they went to RNG here in tennessee?        0  times.  thats right not once.soooooo what i'm doing is keeping fingers crossed about arkansas and if those guys want to play fair and do ball draws i'll just take my business there.i honestly expected a small mistake by our lottery here every now and then but when i got up one morning and saw on here the headline in the news section about tennessee going to RNG i was hit with total shock.tennessee had one of the best lotteries in the nation before this idiot decided to she was going to RNG the lottery.and can you believe the reason was because she said the workers were complaining about setting the ball machines up every day,lol.they quoted that idiot rebecca paul saying that.if thats the case then those people should've been fired and replaced.heck i would've took the job myself and set 'em up.i'm counting on you arkansas.

                             

                            p.s.... todd what do you think about me getting with the media in arkansas and showing these guys over there all the bad screwups tennessee has had by using computer draws.maybe spreading the word before hand could do some good.

                            The more people warning Arkansas about falling into the computerized drawing trap the better! 

                            They need to hear early and often about how players do not like and do not trust computerized drawings.

                            If they want to kick off their lottery without another group of people attacking them (i.e., like the anti-gambling folks), they need to ensure that only mechanical ball drawings will be used.

                            Arkansas legislators:  When you write your lottery laws, please specify the following language:

                            The drawings for any online lottery ("lotto") games that consist of fewer than 10 chosen numbers per drawing will be conducted using a mechanical device in which both the selection of the drawing results and the means by which the numbers are selected can be directly and physically observed by a layman witness.

                             

                            Check the State Lottery Report Card
                            What grade did your lottery earn?

                             

                            Sign the Petition for True Lottery Drawings
                            Help eliminate computerized drawings!