New Mexico Bill Would Allow Credit Card Payments for Lottery Tickets
In an effort to boost ticket sales for New Mexico’s struggling lottery, Democratic State Senator John Arthur Smith has proposed a bill to allow players to purchase tickets with their credit cards. At this time, the only payments accepted for lottery tickets are cash and, in some venues, debit cards or prepaid cards.
The New Mexico lottery contributes to a popular scholarship fund in the state that allows students to get affordable college educations. The lottery has struggled to keep up its profit margins over the last few years, but Smith’s proposal could open new doors that may help keep the fund afloat. Higher education officials in New Mexico have already said they will not be able to keep up with tuition increases and financial assistance needs if they cannot find a way to quickly increase their ticket sales.
The concern with allowing people to buy lottery tickets with credit cards is that consumers can acquire high debt levels in a short period of time. Gambling addicts are particularly at risk of overspending if they are able to buy tickets with credit cards. People can still take out cash advances on their credit cards to pay for tickets with the current system, but this will make the process much easier for those who cannot properly control their finances.
Another issue to consider is the fees that lottery ticket sellers will have to pay for credit card processing. Will they have to boost their ticket prices to accommodate this new payment option, or will the lottery fund absorb the fees?
There are no updates about the bill’s passing at this time, but officials are taking it into consideration.