Gov. Cooper announces $1M cash lotteries to boost NC’s vaccination rates

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RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – Gov. Roy Cooper announced a series of cash drawings for people who are vaccinated against COVID-19 in North Carolina.

The lottery is aimed to get more North Carolinians vaccinated – Cooper said around 2.5 million adults in the state are still unvaccinated.

“We’re pulling out all the stops,” Cooper said.

UPDATE: $4M in cash, $500K in scholarships to be awarded in NC vaccine lottery, documents show

There will be four drawings for $1 million for those who are vaccinated and are 18 and older.

North Carolinians ages 12-17 who have gotten at least one shot are automatically entered into four drawings to pay $125,000 for a college education at a school of their choice.

The first drawing will occur June 23 and will happen every two weeks for the next three months.

Any one who gets vaccinated Thursday and forward will be entered into the lotteries twice.

No action is needed if you’re already vaccinate – you’re already enrolled.

“Regardless of who wins, there’s no way to lose. A chance at a million dollars or a college scholarship is pretty good motivation. But even if your name isn’t drawn, the worst you’ll do is get strong protection from a deadly virus,” Cooper said.

North Carolina is using federal coronavirus relief funds for the drawings.

The lottery follows what states like California, Ohio, and New Mexico are doing.

“After seeing the benefit in other states, we believe this program will help get more North Carolinians vaccinated, making our state a safer place for everyone,” Cooper said.Free beer? Cash? NC officials, eyeing other states, consider incentives to encourage vaccinations 

Vaccinated residents who register on New Mexico’s “Vax 2 the Max” portal can win prizes from a pool totaling $10 million that includes a $5 million grand prize, Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham announced.

Ohio and California are also offering lotteries that have shown some success in boosting vaccination rates. California previously offered the largest single prize of $ 1.5 million from a total lottery pool of $116 million.

This story will be updated as it develops.

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