State senator pushes for online lotto sales

Author: Adam Wright
Published: Updated:

FORT MYERS, Fla. – At Toots Dollar Store in downtown Fort Myers, owner Skip Muffali sells a lot of lottery tickets.

“Probably over 15,000 tickets a month,” Muffali told WINK News.

To him, it’s not just about the money he makes off of them, it’s about the customers.

“You get to meet and greet people buying them,” he said.

But a new bill proposed by Florida state senator Gwen Margolis could change everything. She wants the state to start selling lotto tickets online.

It would make Florida the eighth state to sell tickets that way. Margolis believes it will help increase total sales, raising more money for education.

Muffali says it will cause fewer people to walk through his doors.

“It will hurt a lot of stores because they depend on the people coming in. If they want to go online that’s their business, but I think many of the people that actually own the stores will be hurt by it,” Muffali said.

“I like the idea, I figured if it’s convenient the state will probably make more money,” said convenience store customer Greg Tretwold.

Some say the convenience of buying online doesn’t matter to them.

“I’d rather come to a store because you’re… putting more money into the store, you might be buying something different, a pack of cigarettes, this, hat, so you’re putting more money into the business,” said Toots customer Michael Ingaro.

The proposed bill doesn’t specify any details on how the online sales would operate.

If the bill passes it would take effect July 2015.

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