News 12 @ 11 o'clock -- January 12, 2009
AUGUSTA, Ga -- Local convenient stores say even with a slumping economy, they've seen more people coming in to buy scratch-off lottery tickets. Store clerks say they've seen more people buying the expensive scratch offs that cost $20. And they say it's all in hopes of winning bigger money.
The ticket sales aren't just helping those who are buying. Win or lose, the real winners from the lottery are students in the two-state area.
In 2008, $867 million went to funding education in the state. That's up $14 million from 2007's total of $853 million. In South Carolina, they've set aside from $2 billion from January 2002 through fiscal year 2008-2009 to go to students in the state.
Store clerks say with more people cashing in, they've been trying to keep the tickets in stock. But no matter how much they are spending, it's helping fund a better cause.
Most stores say they've seen very little change in the regular lottery, but they're seeing more people taking their chances with scratch-offs. They say scratch off sales have been through the roof. One store clerk said she's had customers come in and spend hundreds of dollars at once. All in hopes of getting some extra cash in these tough economic times.