Lotto helps rich, hurts poor - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Lotto helps rich, hurts poor

January 27, 2002

Albany-- People who play the Georgia lottery most can least afford it. And a UGA study shows they rarely reap the benefits.

Amanda Watts had a lucky ticket today, winning $25.00. A UGA study shows that lotto money used for HOPE scholarships, tends to help higher income, better educated families, the people who play Lotto the least. Amanda says she plays the lotto when she can afford too, but says she knows "many" people who spend money they don't have on the lottery.

Amanda Watts says, "They get behind on bills they have to hope to win the next one to pay up but it doesn't normally work that way. So you don't play like that. Oh no, my bills come first."

The study does show some educational programs paid for by the lotto--like pre-kindergarten and two year colleges--help lower income people. That means at least some of the lottery's education benefits help those who actually play the games.

Posted at 5:50 p.m. by melissa.kill@walb.com