Birthday by Katy Perry
Happy Valentine's Day there!
Last week I explained how school funding reports work. If you're a new subscriber (welcome!) you may want to peek back at that issue first.
Let's play the lottery: When I was researching NC school funding I saw a lot of people asking about the North Carolina Education Lottery. Like many states, the profits from the lottery program (scratch off tickets, power ball etc) are supposed to be bonus funding for the school's education budget. But that's not working out in North Carolina...
False Promises: When it was created in 2005, the North Carolina lottery promised to supplement the state's education budget with a minimum of 35% of profits going directly to education. The state was supposed to treat the money like a bonus 🎂, not as a main source of funding. Both these stipulations have been removed. Now it is just a guideline that 35% goes to education, and in some years, like 2016, as low as 25% was shared.
Cake for dinner: Since it is just a guideline to spend the money of education, NC frequently diverts money to other state needs. However it still advertises that the money goes directly to education. UNC Charlotte conducted a study on how the lottery impacted school funding for ten years. They found the lottery money did not increase per pupil spending when compared to population growth and inflation. It is simply replacing other spending. Mike Easley, the former governor who initiated the lottery has called it "a big disappointment, but not a surprise."
To sum it up, Walter Hart, one of the lead researchers said "The lottery was sold as icing on the cake, and over time it’s become more and more of the cake."
If you want to read a little more, this article did an excellent job of explaining the study on NC's lottery.
Check this out:
Til next week,
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