Too many politicians in North Carolina are banking on a lottery as the solution our states fiscal problems. They are wagering that revenue generated from the sale of lottery tickets will make up any short falls in the state’s budget. Unfortunately, this line of thinking clashes with the reality that a lottery will create significant loses in sales tax for state and local governments.
Recently, the North Carolina Budget and Tax Center calculated that if the lottery sold $882 million in tickets, the state would end up losing $23.6 million in sales tax revenue. Local governments would lose $12.7 million in revenue under this situation. Local governments will suffer more because unlike the state government they do not receive any of the revenue from the lottery. The losses in revenue would occur because there is no sales tax levied on lottery tickets.
“The loss of sales tax revenue is a perfect example of how a lottery will only create more problems, instead of solving them,” said North Carolina Citizens for a Sound Economy (NC CSE Director) Jonathan Hill. “I am confident once people learn all of the facts about what a lottery will do to North Carolina they will want nothing to do with it.”