Maine primed for tax windfall from Mega Millions jackpot

The sale of the winning ticket at a small-town gas station could lead to $52 million in revenue for the state.
A Mega Million sign displays the estimated jackpot of $1.35 Billion at the Cranberry Super Mini Mart in Cranberry, Pa., Thursday, Jan. 12, 2023. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar)

Maine could gain $52 million in tax revenue after the sale of a winning Mega Millions ticket at a small-town gas station there.

The jackpot Friday was worth about $1.35 billion if paid out in annual installments or about $724 million in cash. That’s the second-largest jackpot in the history of the Mega Millions game, and the first Mega Millions jackpot ticket sold in Maine, according to the Mega Millions consortium of lotteries.

The winner will owe 24% of the jackpot federal taxes and an additional 7.15% in state taxes. If the winner chooses the cash payout, they could owe $52 million in state taxes alone.

New Hampshire Gov. Chris Sununu (R) needled Maine Gov. Janet Mills (D) on Twitter over the news, noting that the winning ticket was sold a mile from the New Hampshire border. New Hampshire has no income tax and lottery winners who live there don’t owe state taxes on their winnings.

“Congrats on the windfall, @GovJanetMills…but we’ll stick to no income tax,” Sununu tweeted.

Maine’s general fund will also benefit from the sale of Mega Millions tickets leading up to the jackpot draw. The state sold $6.8 million in tickets since the last drawing in October, generating $2 million in state tax revenue, according to the Department of Administrative and Financial Services, which oversees the Maine State Lottery.

Every state but Alabama, Alaska, Hawaii, Nevada and Utah participates in the Mega Millions game.