Bet a penny, win $1,000 -- in theory
PIERRE -- Want to bet a penny and win a grand at video lottery? That soon will be possible, at least theoretically, in South Dakota under rules adopted Wednesday by the state Lottery Commission.
The Legislature earlier this year added penny play -- nickel and quarter plays were already legal -- and removed the limit of $125 as the maximum prize for a 25-cent bet.
The $2 bet limit and the maximum $1,000 prize remained in effect, however. The result is lottery officials can negotiate with game manufacturers to set any payout schedule, as long as the top prize doesn't exceed $1,000.
No one sent letters to the commission's public hearing Wednesday and only one person testified. That was Larry Mann, of Rapid City, representing the South Dakota Association of Video Lottery Establishments.
Mann explained the real impact of the rule changes. He wanted to ensure commissioners understood the flexibility that will be added for bet-prize ratios.
Lottery officials and commissioners are looking for ways to spice up play. Video lottery is one of state government's largest contributors to the general fund and provided $87.8 million in 2012.
Under the proposed rules, the old prize caps -- $25 for a nickel bet, $50 for a dime bet and $125 for a quarter bet -- will be repealed and the only limit will be a $1,000 maximum prize for any bet.
Lottery director Norm Lingle said the proposed new changes will go next to the Legislature's rules review committee for final scrutiny and are on schedule to take effect July 1 at the same time as the new law.