Largest Mega Millions Jackpot Helps NY Lottery Generate Millions For Education

Written By Grant Lucas on August 14, 2023
mega millions sign new york lottery store

For 32 straight drawings, Mega Millions went without a jackpot winner. That streak ended Aug. 8, when a ticket sold in Florida matched the five white balls and the gold Mega Ball to claim a record-setting $1.602 billion jackpot.

While New York missed out on its fourth-ever Mega Millions jackpot winner, the Empire State was by no means a loser.

According to the New York Lottery, that record Mega Millions run generated over $68.9 million in lottery sales to benefit NY public schools and lottery retailers. That total comes from the $168.07 million in Mega Millions ticket sales throughout New York.

Public schools benefit big from Mega Millions jackpot chase

All New York Lottery profits go toward K-12 public schools in the state, totaling $58.82 million. In addition, NY Lottery retailers earned $10.08 million in commissions on Mega Millions sales.

“For decades, New York’s schools and lottery retailers have seen real benefits from lottery
sales,” Brian O’Dwyer, chair of the New York State Gaming Commission, said in a press release.

“Even though Wednesday’s Mega Millions top prize was won elsewhere, New York’s students and small businesses across the state continue to be repeat winners. We will continue to promote responsible enjoyment of these fun and exciting games and look forward to the next jackpot.”

The most profitable state lottery in the country, the New York Lottery contributed $3.7 billion to education for fiscal year 2022-23.

NY Lottery had its fair share of Mega Millions winners

Despite a New York lottery ticket not hitting the Mega Millions jackpot, there were plenty of big winners during the 32-drawing run.

All told, according to the NY Lottery, New Yorkers combined for $4.9 million in Mega Millions prizes of over $10,000 between April 21 and Aug. 8.

That includes:

  • Four $1 million second-prize winners
  • 76 third-prize winners of $10,000
  • Six Megaplier third-prize winners of $10,000

Near-record jackpot for Powerball also saw big sales

These Mega Millions numbers come on the heels of a near-record-setting Powerball jackpot won by a California ticket on July 19.

During the lead-up to that $1.08 billion top prize, New York Lottery sales totaled $134 million over 39 drawings. That resulted in $46.9 million for public schools in the state and $8 million in sales commissions to lottery retailers.

Stats from that three-month run of NY Powerball sales included:

  • Seven $1 million second prize winners
  • One Powerplay winner of $250,000
  • One Powerplay winner of $200,000
  • Two Powerplay winners of $150,000
  • Six Powerplay winners of $100,000
  • 67 $50,000 third prize winners
Photo by Seth Wenig / AP Photo
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Grant Lucas

Grant Lucas is the managing editor for PlayNY. A longtime, award-winning sports writer, Grant has covered gambling and legal sports betting since 2018, when he got his start reporting on the New Jersey and Pennsylvania industries. He now oversees PlayNY as New York expands legalized gambling to sports betting and online casino gaming.

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