DES MOINES, Iowa — With an estimated $825 million jackpot, people across Iowa and the U.S. are flocking to gas stations to buy Powerball lottery tickets.
It’s the second largest prize in Powerball history, the fifth largest in North American lottery history.
Powerball tickets cost $2. It costs an extra dollar if the player wants to add the “Power Play,” which increases all prize values except the jackpot.
Iowa Lottery spokesperson Mary Neubauer said about a quarter of lottery sales in the Hawkeye State help pay for various programs including the Veterans Trust Fund and money to help families of first responders who died in the line of duty. Some proceeds from lottery sales also go into the state’s General Fund.
“The General Fund goes to pay for everything from education to agricultural programs, so just about every program in Iowa gets money from the General Fund, so it is making a difference here at home,” Neubauer said. “We’re really proud of that and I hope that lottery players can be proud of that as well to know they’re helping their state, they’re making a difference right here at home.”
She said the remaining dollars from lottery ticket sales go to several places. About 5-7 percent goes to the gas station or store that sold the ticket. Proceeds also help pay for lottery equipment and paper for tickets. They also help ensure there’s enough money to pay out prizes for all winners.