Powerball jackpots are rising faster

Inquirer writer Peter Mucha reports:

Powerball jackpots do seem to be getting larger faster, following changes that took effect last week.

Tomorrow night’s jackpot is $146 million, up $41 million in a week.

The last time the top prize crossed $100 million, in September, it grew “only” $34 million in a week.

The main reason for the accelerated growth is that Florida joined Powerball, eclipsing Pennsylvania as the multistate lottery's most populous state. Thirty states now offer Powerball, including Delaware.

Adding millions of new players, however, meant jackpots might get hit more often, so officials also lengthened the odds. A single ticket now has a 1 in 195 million shot, compared to 1 in 146 million before last Wednesday.

The $146 million jackpot is the fourth biggest in a year. The heftiest was $276 million, won last March by eight West Virginia tax office workers.

Mega Millions. Tonight’s jackpot is $22 million. Mega Millions is played in New Jersey, Maryland and 10 other states.

For more, see Philly.com’s lottery page. Read more breaking news in our From the Source blog.