Lottery law change makes it possible to pay with debit card

OKLAHOMA CITY- On Thursday, if you want to play the Oklahoma Lottery you can use your debit card to pay.

We asked several Oklahomans what they think about the new law taking effect on Thursday:

"I think it’s a good thing for those who don’t like to carry cash," said Paula.

"I think it’s the dumbest thing I've ever heard," said Chris.

"Um, haven’t really thought about it," said Natalie.

Now vendors will be able to accept debit cards from customers. Officials  say it's an effort to make the lottery more convenient for their customers.

“The ability of our retailers to accept debit payments is another way we’re working to increase player interest, grow sales and maximize our contribution to Oklahoma education,” said Jay Finks, Oklahoma Lottery deputy director. “As retailers and consumers have shifted away from preferring cash for their transactions, Lottery sales have been negatively impacted by not offering this widely utilized form of payment.”

The change is part of a year long overhaul of the lottery that officials say have led to a 40 percent increase in overall sales and a 19 percent increase in funds contributed to education.

But critics say being able to pay with money you don’t actually have in hand will make it easier for people with gambling problems to feed their illness.

"I don’t believe you should gamble with money you don’t have  banks usually let you overdraw your account …500 dollars overdraft," said Ryan.

Now it will ultimately be up to the vendor to decide whether or not to accept debit cards.

"There is no need for it; it needs to stay cash," said Chris.

"I think because a lot of people just don’t carry cash around with them , I think it's kinda beneficial for that," said Paula.