Lottery Tickets Could Be Available Online

By: Jennifer Cavazos
By: Jennifer Cavazos

More than 500 lottery tickets are sold at the Calvert convenience store every day, people hoping to get lucky from a scratch off or quick pick. But what if you had the chance to play the lottery online?

"I wouldn't buy them online-just for the fact you have to give your credit card online. I would rather just come in and pay for them cash and see if I win," says lottery buyer, James Johnson.

The House Appropriations Committee signed off on a bill that would allow lottery players to buy their tickets online with a debit card. The author of the bill says online lottery ticket sales would earn an additional $100 million a year.

Retailers receive five cents of every $1 ticket sold, but Stephanie Stanislaw at this Calvert convenience store says she's not worried about sales going down.

"I don't think it would be a problem for store per se we have a lot of people that don't have the internet and it would be the same. There's a lot of locals that like to come in anyway, get a drink and their lottery ticket," says Stanislaw.

Psychologists say moving the game of chance from the convenient stores to your laptop could lead to bigger problems.

Antonio Cepeda-Benito a clinical psychologist says for those addicted to gambling, easier access to playing the lottery may not be such a good idea.

"Gambling would be one of those situations where some people would abuse the behavior and will engage in it because it is easy to acquire and achieve if you can do it in the privacy of your home. Then it might have more attractiveness for some people," says Cepeda-Benito.

"I might do it because maybe I’m at home and I don't have a chance to go get one cause its almost too late. And I get online to get one right quick maybe I’ll do that," says Stanley Pullin who buys lottery tickets.

One lawmaker predicts the bill has a 50-50 chance of making in out of the House. If it's made law, Texas would become the first state to allow such purchases of lottery tickets online.


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