Formed in 1972, the State Lottery Agency began operation on January 2, 1973 (Chapter 365, Acts of 1972, ratified November 7, 1972).

The State Lottery Agency conducts statewide lotteries for instant, daily, keno and lotto games, as well as a lotto subscription game. Revenues from the State Lottery are deposited with General Funds in the State Treasury. Proceeds from the "Big Game" and certain instant scratch-off games are designated for the Maryland Stadium Authority. Lottery revenues are the State's third largest revenue source, after income taxes and sales taxes.

The Agency conducts a three-digit daily lottery called "The Numbers Game" (Pick 3); and a four-digit lottery (Pick 4). It also runs a pick-six-out-of-forty-nine Lotto Game with minimum jackpots of $1 million and twice-weekly drawings.

In 1996, the Agency introduced "The Big Game," a multi-state game with larger jackpots and more ways to win. Georgia, Illinois, Massachusetts, Michigan, and Virginia also participate. Players select six numbers: five out of 50 and one out of 25.

In licensed retail establishments, lottery ticket sales outlets sell and cash in daily lottery tickets through a terminal connected to a computerized on-line real-time system. Prizes of $600 or less may be claimed through any of these sales outlets. Each provides How-to-Play brochures and other game information.

Official winning numbers are drawn on live television. For the Pick 3 and Pick 4 games, they are drawn midday (Monday through Saturday) and evenings (Monday through Sunday). Evening drawings also are held for the Lotto Game (Saturday and Wednesday), and for the Big Game each Friday night.

Within the State Lottery Agency are four divisions: Administration, Finance, and Operations; Information Technology; Marketing; and Sales.

The Director of the Agency is appointed by the Governor with Senate advice and consent (Code State Government Article, secs. 9-101 through 9-125).

The State Lottery Commission serves as an advisory board to the State Lottery Agency. The Commission's five members are appointed to four-year terms by the Governor with Senate advice and consent (Code State Government Article, secs. 9-104 through 9-106).

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July 18, 2000   
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