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$1 million North Carolina Vaccine Lottery: how to enter and sign up

North Carolina joins a growing list of states enticing residents to get vaccinated using one-million-dollar cash prizes and university scholarships.

North Carolina joins a growing list of states enticing residents to get vaccinated using one-million-dollar cash prizes and university scholarships.
Fabrizio VillaGetty Images

Governor Roy Cooper of North Carolina announced on Thursday two lottery-style drawings to encourage state residents to get vaccinated. The programs are called Summer Cash which will offer four $1 million prizes and Cash 4 College which will give four teenagers a chance at college scholarships.

The program mirrors other lotteries that followed the lead of the first one set up in Ohio, the Vax-a-Million lottery. After Governor Mike DeWine announced Ohio’s lottery, vaccination numbers soared 43 percent over the previous week. Governor Cooper hopes to get a similar bump in numbers to get the state to 66 percent of the population vaccinated. The state has so far partially vaccinated around 54 percent of the residents.

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How can North Carolinians participate in state’s vaccine lottery?

Anyone who is 18 and older and has received at least one shot of a covid-19 vaccine will be entered in the Summer Cash, with a few exceptions. To entice those that have hesitated until now to get their jab, North Caroliniams who get vaccinated after 10 June will be entered twice in the lottery.

Those who are incarcerated will not be eligible, nor will anyone connected to the Governor’s office, the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services, North Carolina Council of State members or North Carolina State Lottery program.

There are also concerns that those who’ve been vaccinated at federal sites including Veterans’ Administration, the Department of Defense and Indian Health Services among others, may not be included in the drawings. The Department of Health and Human Services does not have access to data from those locations but is working to do so before the first drawing on 23 June.

Cash 4 College

North Carolinians ages 12-17 who have gotten at least one shot will automatically be entered into four drawings to receive a scholarship to any of the state’s universities. The teenagers will get $125,000 to use toward their education at the in-state higher educational institution of their choice.

When will the drawings be held?

The first of the four drawings for the Summer Cash and Cash 4 College will be held on Wednesday 23 June. The three following drawings will be done every other week with the final drawing on Wednesday 4 August.

Governor Cooper said the winners will have their names released publically and will not be permitted to stay anonymous. The winners will also have to pay all federal and local taxes on the winnings.

North Carolina giving $25 cash cards for getting vaccinated

Residents in four counties can get a $25 cash card for getting vaccinated or driving someone to a vaccination site to compensate those people for time and travel. North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services started the Summer Cash Card program last month and the Governor is considering expanding it to other counties due to the promising response. To find out if the program is available in your area by visiting the state’s covid-19 vaccine incentives webpage.


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