Kentucky Lottery advertises where your money goes for the first - News, Weather & Sports

Kentucky Lottery advertises where your money goes for the first time

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - For the first time in its 25-year history, the Kentucky Lottery has begun advertising where proceeds from the sale of its games are spent.

According to a Kentucky Lottery spokesman, it previously was against the law to advertise the information.

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When the state's General Assembly put together the governing legislation for the Kentucky Lottery in 1989, a floor amendment was passed which stated, "...government programs and services shall not be mentioned in advertising or promoting a lottery." Kentucky, therefore, became the only state in the United States to prohibit in advertisements the mention of programs benefited by lottery funds.

"In talking with legislators who were there at the time, there was a great fear of the unknown," said Kentucky Lottery President and CEO Arch Gleason. "The level of concern was high as to what kinds of ads we would run, and specifically there was anxiety that we may run ads which would overpromise benefits. Given that level of nervousness, the beneficiary advertising restriction was put in place."

The restriction was lifted through the latest state budget bill.

TV ads began running on Aug. 25 in seven markets across the state of Kentucky that feature the story of Molly Anderson, a recently University of Kentucky graduate and special education teacher with Fayette County Public Schools. The commercial showcases how Molly received a KEES scholarship, which helped her go to college and fulfill her lifelong dream of becoming a teacher.

Watch the commercial here or click here on mobile devices.

The KEES program, which is solely funded by the Kentucky Lottery, is one of only three scholarship and grant programs which receive Lottery proceeds. The other two need-based programs are the College Access Program and Kentucky Tuition Grants.

Research conducted by the Kentucky Lottery has shown that 83 percent of Kentuckians surveyed didn't feel they received enough information on how lottery proceeds are spent, and 89 percent said the Kentucky Lottery should be able to advertise how proceeds are distributed.

"I've always felt like it was good public policy to tell people where these dollars are going," Gleason said. "Legislators will tell you the number one question they consistently hear from constituents deals with not knowing where proceeds go from lottery sales. Starting with this new commercial, we now look forward to sharing this news across Kentucky - and the story we have to tell is a good one."

Since 1989, more than $4 billion in proceeds from Kentucky Lottery sales have been turned over to the Commonwealth, according to the Kentucky Lottery spokesman. In 1999, proceeds started a gradual shift away from the General Fund and into college scholarships and grants. Since that time, more than $2.2 billion in scholarships and grants paid for with lottery sales money have been distributed by the Kentucky Higher Education Assistance Authority or KHEAA.

"The numbers show 95 cents of every dollar in non-loan student aid awarded by the Commonwealth comes straight from the sale of Kentucky Lottery tickets," Gleason said, "and we're immensely proud of that."

Click here to access the number of scholarships and grants that have been awarded in your area.

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