PA Lottery Official App – Fun & Convenience at Your Fingertips

Play your favorite state lottery games on your mobile device! (*Separate app download required for each game). *Msg & data rates apply.

In the nineteen-sixties, as America’s tax revolt took hold, advocates of legal gambling were forced to rethink their strategy. They could not continue to argue that the lottery would float most of a state’s budget, which sounded like a moral case for selling heroin, so they began to claim that it would help fund one line item, usually education but sometimes elder care or aid for veterans.

As a result, the lottery has become a central part of most states’ revenue streams, bringing in, on average, about one per cent of state funding each year. Compared to traditional tax revenues, that’s not a big sum, but it matters. It makes it harder to pass much needed tax increases, and it leads citizens to believe that schools and other vital services are lavishly supported by gambling money.

But even if the lottery really does help pay for education and other services, it’s not the best way to do so. Most state lotteries are regressive, taking a larger toll on low-income people than on rich ones. They also are not transparent, with consumers largely unaware that they’re paying a hidden tax every time they buy a ticket. That’s a problem for democracy, which requires that public goods be paid for with public funds, and not with private, hidden ones.