Retailers prepare for Mississippi lottery debut

MERIDIAN, Miss. (WTOK) - The Mississippi Lottery is expected to generate $40 million in the first year and then an estimated $80 million to $100 million a year thereafter. The first $80 million will be used for infrastructure; anything over that amount has been earmarked for education.

Meridian businessman David Haggard owns three convenience stores. Haggard says the lottery will be a win-win for his business and for the state.

"So that's a home run,” said Haggard. “Of course, we're hoping to make money for ourselves, and our stores and employees, and help our economy in this area.”

Haggard expects to sell a lot of tickets, especially at his store closest to Alabama.

"We think it's going to be unbelievable. We have a store located near the Alabama line and we think that's going to be interesting since Alabama does not have the lottery,” said Haggard. “This store that we're at right now is around a lot of hotels. We think it's going to be quite busy."

Meridian resident Steve Neal says he's never played the lottery before but is looking forward to buying a few tickets.

"It’s good; we need it,” said Neal. “It's a great thing that's going to happen for a lot of companies.”

Four kinds of scratch-off tickets will be sold beginning Nov. 25. Tickets will cost $1.00, $2.00 and $5.00.

For a list of local retailers that will offer the lottery, click the attached link to visit the website of the Mississippi Lottery.