State legislators are trying to figure out how to overcome a $500 million shortfall, without cutting the money to education further. More than a decade ago, the Kentucky Lottery was formed as a way to raise money for education. Now one of the most talked about topics these days, includes the allocation of lottery funds.
In 2001-02 the Kentucky Lottery brought in $638.7 million. Here's a breakdown:
The 27% going to the state, produced $173 millions. More than $94 million went to fund college scholarship. Last year, nearly $53 million was marked for need-based scholarships (CAP/KTG), while $41.5 million was set aside for merit-based scholarships (KEES). Last year, nearly 6,000 students attending Western Kentucky University received lottery money.
In addition to the scholarships, $3.7 million went into an Affordable Housing Trust Fund, while $3 million went to fund literacy programs. This money includes an Early Reading Incentive Fund, which gives grants to elementary schools. The rest, $71.4 million went into the state's general fund. Once in the general fund, there's no way to track how the money is specifically used.
By 2005-06, the state's general fund won't be seeing a dime of lottery profits. A relatively new law dictates by 2005-06, all lottery revenue will be earmarked into the above mentioned categories.