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FutureStarrSomeone Bought an $11 Million Lotto Ticket in Centennial This Week Unclaimed
Colorado lottery officials report that an $11 million lotto ticket was sold in Centennial this week, marking the largest jackpot for this game since Jan. 19, 2022 when a winning ticket worth $25 million was sold in the state.
Though the winner has yet to claim their prize, a local gas station owner expressed optimism on Tuesday that it could be someone from their neighborhood.
Lotteries are forms of gambling where players wager for a prize. This could be money, goods or services - or any combination thereof. They may be organized by state governments, private companies or the public at large and tend to be popular events; however, organizers may face financial difficulty if ticket sales don't cover costs associated with paying out the winnings.
The Colorado Lottery is proud to be part of the Multi-State Lottery Association (MUSL). Its games include Cash 5, Pick 3, Mega Millions and Lucky for Life; in addition to selling scratch tickets.
Though the Lottery's game selection is relatively small, it has earned a reputation for innovation and creative marketing. Its first director, Owen Hickey, was an early proponent of this approach.
In the 1980s, Colorado voters passed a constitutional amendment that allocated lottery revenue towards conserving and protecting the state's natural outdoors environment. Today, 50% of Lottery proceeds go to GOCO - Great Outdoors Colorado; with any remaining proceeds going toward BEST fund - Building Excellent Schools Today.
Profits from the Lottery have enabled more than 1,100 community parks and outdoor areas, wildlife education for over half a million children, construction of over 750 miles of hiking and biking trails, as well as protecting over one million acres of Colorado wilderness.
As part of its mission, the Colorado Lottery has collaborated with Scientific Games to develop a SGEP program, which has already been adopted by seven of the Top 10 performing instant game lotteries globally (La Fleur's 2022 World Lottery Almanac). According to John Schulz from SGEP Head of Americas and Global Instant Products, this collaboration will allow Colorado Lottery players and communities to be entertained while benefiting.
In some states, unclaimed prizes are given back to the state or used to subsidize other games or promotions. Tennessee, for instance, divides unclaimed money between after-school programs and expenses related to future prizes; similarly in Kentucky, unclaimed lottery money is transferred into support of the Kentucky Educational Excellence Scholarship program.
If you've ever purchased a lottery ticket, chances are your prize has gone unclaimed. Over the last 12 years, Colorado has experienced $29 million worth of unclaimed prizes: $18 million from Lotto jackpots, $10 million from small-stakes scratch tickets and $765,288 from Keno drawings.
In this week's Lotto+ drawing, someone purchased an $11 million lottery ticket at King Soopers in Centennial. According to Meghan Dougherty, spokesperson for the Colorado Lottery, winning numbers were drawn Wednesday night and have 180 days from drawing date to claim their prize.
Unclaimed lottery prizes may go to one of several beneficiaries: Great Outdoors Colorado, The Conservation Trust Fund, Colorado Parks and Wildlife, or Building Excellent Schools Today. Furthermore, any funds left over after claims have been processed are donated to various other organizations.
Some states have specific guidelines regarding how these funds may be allocated. In Pennsylvania, for instance, money is transferred to support older residents; similarly in California, Missouri, South Carolina and Kentucky it goes to fund programs benefitting public school students; finally in Texas all money goes directly into approved state initiatives approved by legislators.
Many states allow winners to remain anonymous. Florida, for instance, exempts prizes of $250k or more from public disclosure after 90 days. New York additionally posts the name and city of the winner on its lottery website.
Still, some states do not permit anonymity. Iowa for instance requires jackpot winners to provide their first and last names in order to claim the prize.
However, that wasn't the case with a ticket purchased at Windsor King Soopers in Northern Colorado this summer. The ticket matched several winning numbers from the Powerball draw on Aug. 1 and will be worth $150,000 if claimed before January 27th according to the Colorado Lottery.
Mark Zamarripa, Colorado Lottery Director, reiterates that money won from unclaimed prizes is not lost. It represents a small part of their overall revenue and will be distributed to beneficiaries in the future.
In addition to the lottery, Colorado residents are subject to a variety of taxes. Depending on your specific circumstance, you may be required to pay sales tax, income tax or both.
Many states levy taxes on individual and business income, with a progressive rate for higher-income earners. On the other hand, some impose a flat tax that applies to everyone regardless of income level.
The state of Pennsylvania levies a 2.9 percent sales tax on most goods and services purchased. Individual cities and counties may impose their own local taxes that are then added to the state's sales tax.
Economic expansion often brings with it strong revenue growth from various sources. For instance, sales tax revenue rose by more than $100 million in fiscal year 1997-98 - an increase of almost 8 percent.
Other major sources of revenue include individual and corporate income taxes, estate taxes, gaming taxes, vehicle registration fees, interest income, etc. All these combined to produce revenues that exceeded the 5.5 percent spending limit allowed under TABOR in 1998.
Though the revenue growth was impressive, there is room for improvement. Particularly, the state must address its high personal income tax rates and lack of incentives to lure people from other states.
One of the most crucial steps to addressing these problems is reforming Colorado's taxable income tax system. A lower rate on taxes would provide a real boost to low-income Coloradans and their families, particularly in some of the state's poorer neighborhoods.
Giving taxpayers a rebate of some portion of their liability would be an encouraging start. But to really make it effective, ensure that this rebate is available to income tax filers and all adult non-filers alike. Alternatively, providing both a rebate and temporary reduction in income tax could accomplish the same thing.
In Colorado, it is illegal to buy lottery tickets without a license. To obtain one, you must register with the lottery and pay an annual subscription fee.
To purchase a lottery ticket in your state, you must visit an authorized retailer. These may be found at grocery stores, convenience stores and gas stations. Alternatively, you may purchase the ticket online; however it's best to double check the laws in your area prior to doing so.
The lottery has a number of regulations to safeguard players and guarantee their winnings are handled responsibly. Unfortunately, these rules can change frequently, so it's essential to stay abreast of them prior to playing.
The Colorado Lottery uses profits to support outdoor recreation, wildlife restoration and open space preservation in the state. Through its rules, proceeds have created or enhanced more than 1,100 parks and outdoor areas across Colorado, provided wildlife education for over half a million children, built or maintained 750 miles of hiking and biking trails throughout Colorado's wilderness, and preserved more than one million acres of stunning Colorado wilderness.
In 2005, three people won a Colorado Lotto jackpot of $4.8 million. Boulder resident Amir Massihzadeh held one set of winning numbers and accepted his prize after paying taxes. But 10 years later, agents from the Colorado Bureau of Investigation suspected him and two other ticket-holders had committed fraudulence.
That prompted an extensive series of investigations by federal and state agencies. Authorities claimed that a computer expert at the Multi-State Lottery Association in Iowa, which runs games across 37 states and U.S. territories, had devised a way to manipulate number-generating computers so his and his brother's sets of winning numbers would be chosen.
He and his brother shared the winning combinations with others, including a Las Vegas company that requested a lump-sum payment. But their plan was uncovered, leading to Tipton's conviction in July.
In addition, the Colorado Lottery has specific rules that determine how prize money is divided among different categories. The jackpot prize is distributed pari-mutuel, while each other prize is awarded according to odds of matching specific number combinations.