NASHVILLE - Fueled by its ninth straight year of record sales, the Tennessee Education Lottery Corp. on Tuesday announced a nearly 5 percent increase in proceeds for state education programs in the just-completed fiscal year.
An all-time high of $339.7 million will be going to college scholarships and other education programs, an increase of 4.95 percent, or $16.2 million, over last year's then-record $323.4 million.
The lottery had $1.36 billion in total sales for the 2013 fiscal year that ended June 30. That's what lottery officials describe as a "hefty increase" of $56.3 million over last year's previous sales records of $1.31 billion.
Total lottery funding for education-related programs in Tennessee -- including funds used for scholarships, grants, and after-school programs -- now totals more than $2.73 billion since the lottery kicked off in January 2004.
According to the Tennessee Student Assistance Corp., the entity that oversees lottery-funded programs, more than 700,000 grants or scholarships to in-state education institutions have been awarded since the Lottery's inception in 2004, including more than 100,000 awards during the past academic year alone.
Lottery funds also are used to support other education-related activities, such as after-school programs and an ongoing initiative to make schools more energy efficient.