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Lottery poised for strong year

PIERRE -- With eight months in the ledger, South Dakota Lottery officials expect their products will generate about $6 million more in revenue this year than in fiscal 2017.

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PIERRE - With eight months in the ledger, South Dakota Lottery officials expect their products will generate about $6 million more in revenue this year than in fiscal 2017.

That's based on a forecast presented Wednesday to the state Lottery Commission.

Sales Director Tom Helland said all three types of gaming had received more play through Feb. 28. State government would net an estimated $123.4 million of revenue for fiscal 2018 from lottery offerings, Helland said. The fiscal year ends June 30.

Video lottery was up about 4 percent and likely would finish about $4 million higher than last year.

Sales of instant or scratch-off tickets "continue to be strong" and have stayed 15 percent ahead of 2017, he said.

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Sales of lotto tickets such as Powerball and Mega Millions lotto are up 29 percent, he said.

Video-lottery revenue is split 50-50 between the privately owned terminals and state government. Money lost is called net machine income. It is expected to total about $220 million this year.

NMI peaked in 2008 at more than $224.6 million. South Dakota voters banned smoking in the 2010 election. Less play caused net machine income to drop, falling to under $176.7 million in 2012. It's gradually risen since then.

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