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“Take your shot Oregon” at Winning the COVID Lottery
Nope. I want a dozen Krispy Kremes and a free tee shirt, too.

This week the Governor Brown announced the next plan for getting people past vaccine hesitancy, free money! During her press conference, Brown stated “If you've been waiting to get a vaccine or you just haven't gotten around to it yet, we're going to give you an extra incentive, how about a million dollars?"

So, if you are 18 years of age or older and still not vaccinated, here is your chance to be rich -- sort of. Oregonians 18 and over who receive at least one dose of the vaccine before June 27th will be entered into both a state wise lottery and an individual county drawing. Those ages 12-17, will not be left out of the game. It they also receive their first dose by June 27th, they will be entered into an Oregon Saves Scholarship drawing.

The statewide cash lottery winner will receive $1,000,000 and each county lottery winner will receive $10,000, before taxes. That’s right, lotter winning are considered ordinary taxable income for both federal and state tax purposes. That means winnings are taxed the same as wages or salary and the entire amount must be reported on the winners tax return.

If you’re the lucky statewide winner, you will have both the 8% state tax and 24% federal taxe withheld. So automatically, the $1,000.000 = $680,000 after taxes. Still not a bad deal for most working-class Oregonians. If you are the county winner, your $10,000 = $6,800 after tax obligation. There may also be additional tax implication depending on your current tax filing status. Only your accountant can answer specific tax questions.

The state will also offer five $100,000 scholarships through the Oregon College Savings Plan (OCSP). The OCSP allows for pre-tax contributions to be made to the state managed college savings accounts and students can then withdraw the funds for qualifying post-secondary education expenses.



While OCSP does not have the same income tax implications as the lottery winnings, there are still annual asset-based fee. These have varied historically between 0.25% and 0.72% depending on the types of investments the owner directs the funds to be places in. Theoretically, the $250 to $720 annual asset-based management fee charged by the state should be less than the earning of the investment. However, like the stock market, there is o guarantee on the investment.

So, for a minor intending to seek post-secondary education this might be better than winning the lottery. However, if the student choses to not attend a qualified post-secondary school option and withdraws the money for something other than education, there will be state and federal tax penalties taken out of the funds. Again, only your personal account can answer these detailed questions.

So, for the procrastinators of the world, this may be your chance to get rich if you chose to get vaccinated. For those that don’t chose to get the shot, the current Oregon Lotter jackpot is at $3, Megan Million is at $20M, and Powerball is at $218M, and every Casino in the state is up and running 7 days a week. Like they say, “you can’t win if you don’t play”. Which game you chose to play in this case is up to you.

--Terese Humboldt

Post Date: 2021-05-23 08:23:24Last Update: 2021-05-22 16:29:05

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