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Valles Caldera

About the New Mexico Lottery

How was the New Mexico Lottery created?

In 1994, New Mexico voters passed a public referendum approving the formation of a Lottery. The New Mexico Lottery Act went into effect on July 1, 1995. On April 27, 1996, the New Mexico Lottery became the 38th U.S. lottery. New Mexico Lottery Historical Timeline

Is the Lottery a state agency?

No. In the New Mexico Lottery Act, the Legislature declared that "the most desirable, efficient and effective mechanism for operation of a state lottery is an independent lottery authority organized as a business enterprise separate from state government, without need for state revenues or resources and subject to oversight, audit and accountability by public officials and agencies."

As a result, it established the New Mexico Lottery Authority as a government instrumentality, separate and apart from the state, governed by a board of seven directors, who are appointed by the Governor. The Lottery is subject to oversight by the Legislative Finance Committee.

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