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  • National Lottery (Ireland)

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    The National Lottery () is the state lottery of Republic of Ireland. It was created when the Republic of Ireland government passed the National Lottery Act, 1986 to help raise funds for good causes. The eligible causes are sport and recreation, health and welfare, national heritage and the arts, the Irish language, and the natural environment.In 2005, at the E.U. gaming convention in Gent, Belgium, E.U. Legislation was passed prohibiting Irish residents playing any Irish National Lottery games while abroad in any E.U member state. This includes Tenerife. National Lottery gaming operations began on 23 March 1987 with scratchcards, and the flagship drawing game, Lotto, began in March 1988. The National Lottery now operates three families of drawing games (Lotto, EuroMillions, and Daily Million), funds televised bingo and game shows, sells a wide range of scratchcards, and runs a number of Millionaire Raffles each year. National Lottery games are available online as well as through a network of over 3,700 retail agents nationwide. By the end of 2013, the National Lottery had achieved over €12 billion in cumulative sales, had paid out €6.7 billion in prizes, and had raised €4.4 billion for the good causes it supports. In 2011, 2.2 million Irish people (64 percent of the adult population) reported playing National Lottery games, with 1.5 million (42 percent) reporting that they played weekly. In 2013, due to a financial crisis that had left the Irish state running a large budget deficit, the Irish government agreed to sell the National Lottery licence for 20 years to a private operator, Premier Lotteries Ireland. The new operator took ownership of the licence on 27 February 2014. The government is receiving €405 million from the sale, some of which will finance the construction of a new National Children's Hospital.

  • National Lottery (United Kingdom)

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    The National Lottery is the state-franchised national lottery in the United Kingdom. It is operated by Camelot Group, to whom the licence was granted in 1994, 2001 and again in 2007. The lottery was initially regulated by the National Lottery Commission, which has since been abolished and its responsibilities transferred to the Gambling Commission, and was established by the government of John Major in 1994. All prizes are paid as a lump sum and are tax-free. Of all money spent on National Lottery games, around 53% goes to the prize fund and 25% to "good causes" as set out by Parliament (though some of this is considered by some to be a form of "stealth tax" levied to support the Big Lottery Fund, a fund constituted to support public spending). 12% goes to the UK Government as lottery duty, 4% to retailers as commission, and a total of 5% to operator Camelot, with 4% to cover operating costs and 1% as profit. Lottery tickets and scratch cards (introduced in 1995) may be bought only by people of at least 16 years of age.

  • Numbers game

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    The numbers game, also known as the numbers racket, the policy racket, the policy game, the Italian lottery, or the daily number, is a form of illegal gambling or illegal lottery played mostly in poor and working class neighborhoods in the United States, wherein a bettor attempts to pick three digits to match those that will be randomly drawn the following day. For many years the "number" has been the last three digits of "the handle", the amount race track bettors placed on race day at a major racetrack, published in racing journals and major newspapers in New York. Gamblers place bets with a bookmaker ("bookie") at a tavern, bar, barber shop, social club, or any other semi-private place that acts as an illegal betting parlor. Runners carry the money and betting slips between the betting parlors and the headquarters, called a numbers bank or policy bank. The name "policy" is based on the similarity to cheap insurance, which is also a gamble on the future.

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