Birmingham could get its own version of the National Lottery to help the city council escape from its financial woes.
The local authority is looking at the possibility of raising money to underpin services from a weekly or monthly draw.
Details were released by city leader Mike Whitby, who said “large prizes” would be available to local people.
Coun Whitby (Con Harborne) said the idea was in its early stages and no decisions have been taken, but he believes a lottery could raise millions of pounds for Birmingham which would be used to maintain and improve popular services including museums and libraries.
The city council is facing huge financial problems. It has to deliver government spending cuts of about £330 million by 2015.
Coun Whitby told a meeting of the full city council that he was committed to improving services through the use of innovative fund-raising opportunities.
He added: “One of the avenues open to us is the creation of a Birmingham Lottery, where large prizes will be available to local people, and all the profits could be invested, for example, into extra cultural facilities.
“There is considerable work to do on the concept, nevertheless it is a potential lever for a multi-million pound investment in the city.”
A council spokeswoman explained that a single lottery licence would enable Birmingham to sell £10 million of tickets a year.
A minimum 20 per cent – £2 million – must be used by the council to fund “good causes” but Birmingham would hope to raise much more, she added.
The proposal will go out to consultation along with other ideas for next year’s budget, including closing a £15 million social services funding gap .
Coun Whitby confirmed that Birmingham will take advantage of a Government subsidy to freeze council tax bills for the second successive year.
He added: “We will begin consultation on a new budget for Birmingham, which puts people first and allows them to have even more of a say over how the council decides to spend its money.”