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N.J. looks to be first in nation with online lottery sales

New Jersey LotteryNew Jersey Lottery: N.J. looks to be first in nation with online lottery sales

Retailers worried about loss of revenue, store traffic

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J.For Tushar Patel, every $1 lottery ticket he sells at his Pantry 1 Food Market in — For Tushar Patel, every $1 lottery ticket he sells at his Pantry 1 Food Market in Hammonton yields more than the 5-cent commission he gets from New Jersey.

Patel said he makes more from the other purchases of customers who visit the store for lottery tickets.

"Eighty (percent) to 90 percent of the people who play the lottery here buy coffee and other things," Patel said.

The state lottery posted record sales exceeding $2.6 billion in 2010. Now, proposed legislation seeks to increase the lottery's profits by allowing gamblers to buy tickets online directly from the lottery.

Patel and other convenience store owners are worried that would eat into their businesses. They hope the proposal is a long shot of Mega Millions proportions.

The threat to the mostly small businesses that sell the tickets comes at a time when the New Jersey Lottery Commission has experienced its greatest success as more and more residents seek a big payday.

The lottery returned $924 million in profits to state programs last year, funding education, human services and veterans services, about $37 million more than the fiscal year before.

And in a state grappling with major budgetary issues, a money-making operation is a valuable commodity.

Assemblywoman Annette Quijano, D-Union, sponsored the proposal, which cleared the Assembly Regulatory Oversight and Gaming Committee in December.

The bill is still a work in progress, and Quijano said she is listening to concerns from businesses and problem-gambling organizations.

Some details of the bill itself — whether it would mean starting a new game available only online or including ones available in stores is still being discussed, she said. It would not apply to scratch-off tickets.

Quijano said she does not believe the online sales would draw customers away from convenience stores but will attract a new lottery audience.

"Whatever would help bring in additional revenues would help decrease property taxes, but I'm not going to do that on the backs of small businesses," she said.

The bill includes an amendment that says the state would redistribute 5 percent of the electronic sales among lottery agents but does not outline how to do that.

The proposal has raised eyebrows in convenience stores, where lottery machines hum throughout the day printing Pick 3, Pick 4, Jersey Cash 5, Pick 6 Lotto, Powerball and Mega Millions tickets.

One trade group is trying to estimate how much is at stake.

Connecting lottery tickets to sales of hot dogs, chips, beef jerky and coffee is nearly impossible, said Sal Risalvato, executive director of the New Jersey Gasoline, Convenience Store and Automotive Association.

Stores' cash registers are not tied to lottery machines. So in January, Risalvato asked some businesses to log the spending habits of ticket purchasers.

Although he is still receiving results from the informal surveys, Risalvato said anecdotally it can mean big money.

"If someone buys a couple of dollar tickets and a cup of coffee for $1.50, I just made a buck. I made a buck on the coffee and 5 cents on the lottery ticket," he said.

"Many times, when I'm getting that cup of coffee (in the store), it's because I'm there. I smell the cup of coffee. We all have human nature built in us," Risalvato said.

The Lottery Commission did not comment on the proposal

The hype surrounding a big lottery is hard to miss. And southern New Jersey has had its share of big winners: In 2007, Campark Liquors in Woodbine sold a ticket to a buyer who split a $390 million jackpot, the largest American single lottery payout at the time.

Later that year, Blitz's Hole-in-the-Wall Market in Lower Township sold a winning ticket on a $330 million jackpot.

Campark Liquors manager Fern Gandy said the store was packed in 2007, and is still that way today.

"When those lotteries were big this time and the time before it, the lines were all the way down the aisle and around the store," Gandy said.

Versions of online payments for lottery games exist in other states.

The New York Lottery has a subscription service for its Mega Millions and Lotto games, allowing players to sign up for a subscription form and pay for their numbers online.

The service has about 90,000 subscribers, said Carolyn Hapeman, spokeswoman for the New York Lottery.

"In bad weather and for other folks who can't go (out) to play their numbers, they never miss a drawing," she said.

The proposed legislation in New Jersey would add another change to the lottery system: It would allow ticket buyers to use debit cards, both online and in stores.

Currently, the only way to buy a lottery ticket in New Jersey is with cash.

The proposal creates some concerns for the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey.

"This is a new form of access to lottery tickets, and any time a new form of gambling becomes available or improved ... we run the risk of increasing the number of problem gamblers, the extent of the problem," said Donald Weimbaum, executive director of the council.

And in New Jersey, the lottery has increasingly become the source of phone calls to 1-800-GAMBLER, the 24-hour problem-gambling hotline listed on the backs of tickets. The lottery now accounts for about 15 percent of calls, Weimbaum said. In 2004, it accounted for 9 percent.

AP

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21 comments. Last comment 6 years ago by butterflykt.
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ca-dreamin*'s avatar - Lottery-065.jpg
Chicago
United States
Member #70678
February 8, 2009
889 Posts
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Posted: January 28, 2011, 8:45 pm - IP Logged

If this passes I'm sure more states will soon follow.

More than once I've changed my mind about buying tickets because it will start to rain or I just don't want to go out in the cold.

I like the idea of being able to use a debit card too.

Just get me thru this so called life......

    Boney526's avatar - NjlpLogo
    New Jersey
    United States
    Member #99032
    October 18, 2010
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    Posted: January 28, 2011, 8:48 pm - IP Logged

    If this passes I'm sure more states will soon follow.

    More than once I've changed my mind about buying tickets because it will start to rain or I just don't want to go out in the cold.

    I like the idea of being able to use a debit card too.

    Yep.  I live in NJ, and the day after Christmas my number came up, which I was going to put 5 times straight/box, but it was snowing.

     

    But, I hadn't thought of the fact that quite a few times I go and get a couple tickets and coffee - and they make more money off the coffee.  Even if I bought $10 worth of tickets.

      RJOh's avatar - chipmunk
      mid-Ohio
      United States
      Member #9
      March 24, 2001
      19830 Posts
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      Posted: January 28, 2011, 10:07 pm - IP Logged

      "If someone buys a couple of dollar tickets and a cup of coffee for $1.50, I just made a buck. I made a buck on the coffee and 5 cents on the lottery ticket," he said.

      Maybe he will reduce the price of a cup of coffee and his customers will come in for the coffee and buy some lottery tickets while they are there.

       * you don't need to buy more tickets, just buy a winning ticket * 
         
                   Evil Looking       

        beaudad's avatar - animaniacs26
        Mid Atlantic States
        United States
        Member #60043
        April 3, 2008
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        Posted: January 28, 2011, 10:37 pm - IP Logged

        "If someone buys a couple of dollar tickets and a cup of coffee for $1.50, I just made a buck. I made a buck on the coffee and 5 cents on the lottery ticket," he said.

        Maybe he will reduce the price of a cup of coffee and his customers will come in for the coffee and buy some lottery tickets while they are there.

        Excellent Idea RJ......more traffic......more money.....fresher coffee.....and maybe a doughnut counter for more profit!!! ....beaudad...

        " I don't have a gambling problem,  I have a problem winning!"

          sully16's avatar - sharan
          Ringleader
          Michigan
          United States
          Member #81740
          October 28, 2009
          40572 Posts
          Online
          Posted: January 28, 2011, 10:44 pm - IP Logged

          I can see both view-points, I'd love to buy my tickets in the comfort of my own home, but I would still have to go to a store or gas station to cash in the winning tickets under 5 hundred.

          I would still get stuff like pop or milk with my winnings, when I win I tend to spend more on extras as opposed to when I  am buying tickets.

          or maybe the question should be how do you cash in a ticket you purchase on line...?

          Did you exchange a walk on part in the war ?

          For a lead role in a cage?

           

                                                      From Pink Floyd's " Wish you were here"

            Avatar
            Monkey Butt, USA
            United States
            Member #54569
            August 23, 2007
            1124 Posts
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            Posted: January 29, 2011, 12:01 am - IP Logged

            Will the banks allow for the online gambling?  As it stands now it is very difficult to charge any online gambling because it is illegal. Should this measure pass then the banks are going to have to rewrite their rules.

            Who will get the bonus if the winning ticket is purchased online? The Lottery Commission? Who?

            Will there be an extra fee charged by the bank or the Lottery Commission for doing this transaction online?

            Does this mean the ban on online gambling in the United States will be lifted so that the consumer can choose the type of online gambling he/she prefer to indulge in?

            How will these tickets be printed out and verified should something happen to them?

            Will retailers honor these tickets when it is time to cash them in, since they will probably be printed on regular paper?

            If someone hacks my computer or the Lottery Commission's system and steals a winning ticket, how will I prove that I purchased the winning ticket and not the thief?


              United States
              Member #104970
              January 23, 2011
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              Posted: January 29, 2011, 2:53 am - IP Logged

              N.J. was also the first in the nation to raise tax rates on lotto winnings to 11 percent. What other firsts will be in store for N.J?

                savagegoose's avatar - ProfilePho
                adelaide sa
                Australia
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                April 11, 2006
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                Posted: January 29, 2011, 5:40 am - IP Logged

                a few of my states have online lotto ticket purchases. they pay either via check, direct bank deposit or  deposit into your online account for future purchases

                2014 = -1016; 2015= -1409; 2016 JAN = -106; FEB= -81; MAR= -131; APR= - 87: MAY= -91; JUN= -39; JUL=-134; AUG= -124; SEP = -123; OCT= -84  NOV=- 73 TOT= -3498

                keno historic = -2291 ; 2015= -603; 2016= JAN=-32, FEB= +12 , MAR= -86, APR = -77. MAY= -48, JUN= -29, JUL=-71; AUG = -52; SEPT= -43; OCT = +56 NOV = -33 TOT= -3297

                  YURAN's avatar - Lottery-011.jpg
                  Boryspil/Kyiv
                  Ukraine
                  Member #88792
                  March 23, 2010
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                  Posted: January 29, 2011, 6:29 am - IP Logged

                  Ukrainian National Lottery already has option that allow to buy lottery tickets online. And also we can print these tickets into a paper when it's have a winning combination. National Lottery has four games to play, but online we have 6/52 Superloto, 5/42 Loto Maxima, and 10/20/80 Keno game. But most popular is a usual way to play in lottery is through lottery terminals.

                  The way to pay for these online tickets is bank deposit card, electronic money.

                    Avatar
                    Kentucky
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                    Posted: January 29, 2011, 11:24 am - IP Logged

                    Players won't be able to buy scratch-offs online and those sales are over 50% of all lottery revenues, but the store owners will lose some money from players that buy other items. How much they lose will depend on how many players decide to play online.

                      Litebets27's avatar - power
                      Maryland
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                      Posted: January 29, 2011, 12:30 pm - IP Logged

                      If this passes I'm sure more states will soon follow.

                      More than once I've changed my mind about buying tickets because it will start to rain or I just don't want to go out in the cold.

                      I like the idea of being able to use a debit card too.

                      Good point ca-dreamin*. I'll be happy when other States pick this up and run with it.

                      I seem to have a little more luck with other State lotteries than Maryland's.

                      I hope other states will consider across State-lines profits that could be obtained from online playing.

                      Feeling,  PRICELESS!!!Banana

                      Come on Jackpot!!!

                        savagegoose's avatar - ProfilePho
                        adelaide sa
                        Australia
                        Member #37136
                        April 11, 2006
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                        Posted: January 29, 2011, 12:32 pm - IP Logged

                        if i was a retaile ri would want the comissons t go up, 5c a sale  sheesh and the lotto ofice is planning on taking a chunck back form the retailers. basically in competition with the retailers. sure i have no alleigence with retailers, and would shop online for my purchases the moment it comes in her ein my state. but then i am not a retailer, and i didnt pay for a terminal to be installed in my store.

                        2014 = -1016; 2015= -1409; 2016 JAN = -106; FEB= -81; MAR= -131; APR= - 87: MAY= -91; JUN= -39; JUL=-134; AUG= -124; SEP = -123; OCT= -84  NOV=- 73 TOT= -3498

                        keno historic = -2291 ; 2015= -603; 2016= JAN=-32, FEB= +12 , MAR= -86, APR = -77. MAY= -48, JUN= -29, JUL=-71; AUG = -52; SEPT= -43; OCT = +56 NOV = -33 TOT= -3297

                          DoctorEw220's avatar - alien helmet.jpg
                          Yinzer Country, PA
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                          Posted: January 29, 2011, 4:13 pm - IP Logged

                          While that would be convenient, I would be worried about making it easier for compulsive gamblers  to drain their bank accounts over a big jackpot.

                          I've redone my website.  Go to www.dr-ew.com.  I kept a lot of the old stuff, and I've added some new stuff.  Look for more new stuff in the coming weeks.

                            ca-dreamin*'s avatar - Lottery-065.jpg
                            Chicago
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                            February 8, 2009
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                            Posted: January 29, 2011, 10:19 pm - IP Logged

                            a few of my states have online lotto ticket purchases. they pay either via check, direct bank deposit or  deposit into your online account for future purchases

                            OK I like this! Imagine purchasing online and then getting paid directly into your account without ever leaving home : )

                            When I buy lottery tickets either from the gas station or 7 Eleven I don't buy anything else. (I buy my gas from the city I work in. It's cheaper than Chicago) If I decide to buy tickets from the self-serve machine at the grocery store  I make other purchases but that's why I'm there to begin with.

                            Just get me thru this so called life......