- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 2, 2017

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - North Carolina’s state-run lottery has again exceeded its expectations for generating funds for public education, although it did not quite reach its record from a year ago.

The North Carolina Education Lottery announced Wednesday that net earnings for education programs totaled $622 million for the fiscal year ending June 30. That compares with record net profits of $634 million the previous fiscal year.

Lottery spokesman Van Denton attributes the downward tick to more typical prize and administrative expenses and Powerball ticket sales compared to a year ago, when Powerball sales spiked with a $1.6 billion jackpot.

Still, this past year’s net profits exceeded what lottery commissioners projected in its budget by $71 million. Overall ticket sales exceeded $2.4 billion. Sales have increased each year since sales began in 2006.

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