Powerball Will Continue in Idaho

Thursday April 22nd 2021

Good news for Powerball fans in Idaho: The state's oldest and most-played game will continue to be available ... at least for now. Powerball had previously been set to end in Idaho on August 23.

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Powerball has gotten a reprieve in Idaho due to the Multi-State Lottery Assocation (MUSL), which runs the game on behalf of its member lotteries, delaying its plans to expand to foreign countries until 2022. Previously, tickets were set to go on sale internationally this year.

"International sales of Powerball has been delayed," the MUSL said in a statement. "The issues of offering this game outside the United States are complex. There is no defined timeline for a decision, however, any decision will ultimately be determined by a vote of all 38 members of the Powerball Product Group."

The Idaho Lottery is a member of the Powerball Product Group, and as such will be able to vote on the issue.

The news that ID residents could continue to take part in the game was welcomed by Jeff Anderson, Idaho Lottery Director. "Freedom to play Powerball is restored. This is a game that Idahoans have enjoyed for three decades," he said.

"The voters of Idaho created the Lottery in 1989 after an initiative was placed on the ballot by the Idaho Legislature which received an affirmative vote of the people in the 1988 general election. Shortly thereafter, Idaho was one of the 13 original states that created Powerball in February 1992."

The planned move into Australia and the UK had spelled trouble for Powerball in Idaho. State laws prohibit lottery games that are played outside the US and Canada, and a vote in the Legislature last month confirmed that the state would no longer participate in Powerball from August 23, 2021.

With $14 million in annual state education funding from Powerball ticket sales at risk, the Idaho Lottery lobbied unsuccessfully for a change in the law to allow the state to stay in the game.

Around 670,000 residents of the Gem State play Powerball every year, and the Idaho Lottery reported a groundswell of support for continued participation from players, retailers, and those who benefit from Lottery funding.

"We believe that international sales of Powerball are inevitable and Idaho law will have to be changed in 2022 for players to remain able to enjoy the world’s most popular lottery game," said Anderson. "We will continue to responsibly work with the Idaho Legislature, our players, and our retailers to ensure Idahoans have the freedom to enjoy Powerball in Idaho."

Powerball fans everywhere will get an extra chance to win starting on August 23, when the game adds a new Monday night draw to its current Wednesday and Saturday lineup.

The current Powerball jackpot is $104 million for the next draw on Saturday, April 24, and you can pick up tickets now.

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