The state lottery may seem like an entrenched part of life in Wisconsin, a game that's constantly available and that most of us just take for granted. But the fact is it's a state operation that costs money to run. And a new Legislative Audit Bureau report raises the question of whether or not the proceeds from the lottery -- which was created almost 25 years ago to provide property tax relief -- is still a good bet.
The Wisconsin Taxpayers Alliance recently put out a great analysis of the lottery, finding the average property tax credit last year was $74, the lowest it's ever been, down from a high of $167 in 1992. The study suggests a shrinking percentage reduction in gross levies ahead and raises the question of whether the tax relief generated becomes too small to warrant the expense of the lottery.
We've never liked the lottery. We'll like it even less if starts costing us money.