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Where is the California State Lottery headquarters?

The California State Lottery headquarters is located in Sacramento, California. The lottery was created in 1984 after California voters approved Proposition 37, called the California State Lottery Act of 1984, in the November 1984 general election. The California State Lottery began ticket sales on October 3, 1985 and its first drawing took place on October 3, 1985. The lottery is overseen by the California State Lottery Commission which has five members appointed by the governor. The California Lottery headquarters building is located at 700 North 10th Street, Sacramento, CA 95811.

The California State Lottery, also known just as the California Lottery, has been in continuous operation since its start in 1985. In the fiscal year ending June 30, 2022, the California Lottery generated $8.4 billion in sales revenue. The California Lottery provides supplemental funding to California public schools and colleges. Since the lottery began, it has provided over $39 billion to benefit public schools, colleges and universities. The lottery has provided more than $1 billion each year for the last 18 years to benefit public education. The California State Lottery headquarters coordinates and oversees all aspects of lottery operations throughout California.

History of the California State Lottery

The idea of establishing a lottery in California was proposed multiple times before finally being approved by voters in 1984. In 1964, State Senator George Miller Jr. proposed a lottery measure that was defeated in the legislature. In 1975, a public opinion poll found that 60% of Californians supported creating a lottery. This led State Senator Alan Robbins to propose a constitutional amendment to allow a lottery, but it failed to pass the State Senate. In 1984, the California State Lottery Act qualified as a ballot initiative after a petition drive gathered over 1 million signatures. With 58% voting yes, Proposition 37 was approved by California voters on November 6, 1984. This amended the California State Constitution to authorize a lottery.

After Proposition 37 passed, the California State Lottery Commission was created in December 1984. Governor George Deukmejian appointed the first 5 lottery commissioners. The commission hired Mark Michalko as the first director of the California State Lottery. Ticket sales began on October 3, 1985. The first SuperLotto drawing was held on October 3, 1985 with a jackpot of $1 million. The first Scratchers tickets also went on sale October 3, 1985. Since then, the California Lottery has continued running draw games and Scratchers to generate funds for public education and schools.

California State Lottery Commission

The California State Lottery Commission consists of 5 members appointed by the governor to oversee lottery operations. There are requirements for the commissioners:

  • No more than 3 members can be from the same political party
  • At least 1 member must have experience as an accountant or auditor
  • At least 1 member must have experience as a law enforcement officer

Commissioners serve 4-year terms and can be reappointed. The commission has meetings open to the public each month. Some of the commission’s duties include:

  • Appointing the lottery director
  • Approving contracts like for gaming systems and scratch tickets
  • Establishing the price for lottery tickets
  • Adopting rules and regulations for lottery games

The lottery director oversees the daily operations and carries out the goals set by the commission. The director acts as the chief executive responsible for managing the administrative staff at the Sacramento headquarters and regional offices.

California State Lottery Headquarters Operations

The California State Lottery headquarters building is located in downtown Sacramento. This building serves as the administrative hub for overseeing all lottery activities statewide. Some of the main functions include:

Finance and Accounting

The finance division handles the accounting, auditing, budgeting, procurement, and treasury functions. This ensures proper financial practices for the billions of dollars in annual lottery revenue. Accounting staff prepare financial reports, ensure draw procedures follow protocols, process payments to winners, manage assets and investments, handle banking, and reconcile accounts.

Information Technology

The information technology department maintains computer systems and networks for lottery operations. They develop software for games, accounting, sales tracking, claims processing, and more. IT staff also support the lottery website, mobile app, player portal, and retailer terminal connectivity. They ensure the integrity and security of digital infrastructure and data.

Human Resources

The HR department handles recruiting, hiring, training, and talent management. This includes over 100 employees at headquarters and 1,200 total employees statewide. HR establishes compensation and benefits plans to retain skilled personnel. They ensure compliance with employment regulations and maintain positive employee relations.


Security staff protect lottery assets, facilities, retail outlets, employees, data, and reputation. They conduct background checks on new hires. Security monitors facilities with cameras, controls access, and implements cybersecurity protections. Investigations are done on fraudulent activities and criminal threats.

Sales and Marketing

The sales and marketing teams promote lottery games to maximize revenue for public benefit. They research consumer insights to develop new games and improve products. The marketing department manages advertising campaigns, social media, events, and public relations. Sales staff recruit retail outlets, distribute point-of-sale materials, and train employees how to sell lottery games.

Legal Services

The legal department provides guidance on laws and regulations impacting the lottery. Attorneys review contracts and agreements. They protect lottery intellectual property and assist with licensing deals. Legal staff handle government compliance, public disclosure requests, and disputes. They provide counsel to the lottery commissioners and director.

Product Development

The product development team designs and launches new Scratchers games, draw games, promotions, and ventures. This involves market research, analytics, game design, testing, manufacturing, and project management. Products are optimized to drive sales and offer entertaining play experiences for consumers.

Major California State Lottery Games

The lottery headquarters oversees several major games that generate revenue for California schools and colleges. The largest games include:


Scratchers are instant win tickets with prizes revealed by rubbing off a latex covering on the ticket. Over 200 varieties of Scratchers games are introduced each year with varying price points, odds, and prize amounts. Top prizes range from $1,000 to $5 million. Over 28 billion Scratchers tickets have been sold since 1985, making it the leading source of income for the lottery.


Powerball is a nationwide draw game played in 45 states plus Washington DC, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands. Players choose 5 main numbers and a Powerball for a chance at jackpots starting at $40 million. The largest Powerball jackpot was $1.586 billion shared by 3 tickets in 2016. California joined Powerball in April 2013.

Mega Millions

Mega Millions is a multi-state draw game played in 45 states plus DC and US Virgin Islands. Players select 5 main numbers and a Mega Ball number for a chance at jackpots beginning at $40 million. The record Mega Millions jackpot was $1.537 billion won by a single ticket in 2018. California has offered Mega Millions since 2005 when the game began.

SuperLotto Plus

SuperLotto Plus is California’s in-state draw game. Players choose 5 out of 47 numbers and a Mega number from 1 to 27. Jackpots start at $7 million and rollover if not won. The largest SuperLotto Plus jackpot was $193 million split by 3 tickets in November 1993 shortly after the game launched.

Daily Derby

Daily Derby is a pick-3 style draw game drawn twice daily. Players choose 3 horses to finish 1st, 2nd, and 3rd in a computer animated horse race. Payouts range from $1 for correctly matching a horse to $1 million for selecting the race in exact order.

Fantasy 5

Fantasy 5 is a daily draw game where players pick 5 numbers from 1 to 39. Matching all 5 wins the jackpot starting at $50,000. Lesser prizes are awarded for matching 2, 3, or 4 numbers. Fantasy 5 holds the record for the most top prize winners with over 270 jackpots won annually.

California Lottery Revenue Distribution

By law, 87 cents of every dollar spent on California Lottery games goes back to the community. Lottery funds are allocated as follows:

Beneficiary Percent of Revenue
Public education Minimum 50%
Prizes 50%
Retailer commissions and bonuses About 6%
Operating expenses About 3%

Lottery funds allocated to public education are distributed by state lawmakers to support K-12 schools, community colleges, the California State University, and the University of California. The 50% minimum has provided over $39 billion to education institutions since 1985. Currently, this amounts to more than $1 billion per year in supplemental funding for schools.

Oversight of California Lottery Operations

The lottery headquarters staff, under direction from the lottery commission and director, aim to maintain responsible policies and practices. Various measures provide oversight and accountability for lottery operations.

Financial Audits

Annual financial audits are conducted by independent accounting firms to verify recordkeeping, reporting, and financial controls meet accounting standards. The State Controller also audits lottery funds annually.

Security Audits

Security procedures are audited regularly to safeguard lottery assets and ensure the integrity of games. Audits verify drawing procedures, winner validation, accounting of inventories, and retailer oversight follow proper protocols.

Legislative Oversight

The California State Legislature provides oversight through budgeting processes and any proposed changes to the Lottery Act. The Senate and Assembly budget committees review financial operations annually. The lottery director reports to the Legislature on activities and future plans.

Public Meetings

The California State Lottery Commission holds public monthly meetings. These meetings allow for transparency on decision making and lottery operations. Public comments are accepted at the meetings.

Retailer Audits

Lottery sales staff audit retailer locations to ensure integrity in lottery sales activities. This includes verifying proper validation procedures for winning tickets, inventory management, reporting of sales, and display of promotional materials.


The California State Lottery headquarters oversees lottery operations across the state including game development, marketing, sales, accounting, technology, security, human resources, and legal compliance. Headquarters staff coordinate with the lottery commission to generate funding for public schools and colleges while maintaining responsible policies and practices. The lottery has contributed over $39 billion to education since its start in 1985. With annual ticket sales above $8 billion, the lottery headquarters will continue managing lottery activities that provide Californians the chance to dream while benefiting communities.