As California officially reopened the economy in full, the state celebrated by announcing 10 grand prize winners of $1.5 million, three of whom were Angelenos.
Similar to how the “$50,000 Fridays” were conducted, Gov. Gavin Newsom conducted a lottery-style drawing, choosing 10 numbers that were chosen out of more than 20 million vaccinated Californians. Each winner will then be awarded $1.5 million barring any ineligibility such as being incarcerated or working in government.
In all, the state gave away $116.5 million as incentive to receive a COVID-19 vaccination.
“Under ‘Vax for the Win,’ California was one of the only states in the country to achieve a week-over-week increase in the rate of vaccinations, and most recently saw a 22 percent increase in vaccinations – including an increase in rates amongst hard-to-reach communities,” the governor’s office said in a statement Tuesday. “Since launching Vax for the Win, more than 3 million vaccine doses have been reported, including over 924,221 Californians newly starting their vaccination process, and the state has seen the largest number of first doses administered in communities hit hardest by the pandemic.”
As of Tuesday, 59% of eligible Californians have received at least one dose of a vaccine to fight COVID-19, with 46% of the state being fully vaccinated.
Gov. Newsom held the drawing and celebrated the reopening of the state at Universal Studios Hollywood, highlighting that capacity restrictions for businesses and venues such as Universal have be lifted, along with social distancing measure and most mask regulations.
Vaccinated Californians will also have a chance to win a “Dream Vacation” to one of five California locations, in yet another incentive-based program to encourage vaccinations.