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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- Lottery sales are shining brightly in the Sunshine State.
In what Florida officials are saying is a great sign for the economy, the state recently had its second-best week in sales since it began the lottery in 1988, Fox10tv.com reported. The state lottery earned $63 million in one week, and is on pace to sell $4 billion worth of tickets in 2012, which would set an all-time record.
Lottery ticket sales also provide other benefits, Tom Delacenserie of the Florida Lottery, told the television network. "The thing about lottery is that people rarely just by a lottery ticket," he said. "They usually buy it when they buy something else. Whether that's gas or something from a local [convenience] store or supermarket. So, we're part of a number of other purchases people make.
In addition, a significant percentage of Florida Lottery sales go to a host of educational purposes from buying school materials, to building schools, to scholarship funds, the news outlet reported.
John Hoang, who has worked at Thumbs Up Food Store in Tallahassee since 2009, said customers feel good about buying lottery tickets in the store because they know that even if they lose, their money will go to a good cause.
"Usually, nine out of 10 people that come in here buy scratch-off tickets; either it's a dollar ticket [or] ranges up to $20 per ticket," he said. "Some people come in here for 30 minutes and spend around $150 to $200."