Concerns were raised by lawmakers when Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine announced a controversial promotion offering five $1 million lottery prizes for adults and five full-ride scholarships for teens in Ohio who are vaccinated, Fox News reports.
However on Monday, the Republican governor announced more than 2.7 million people in the state have since registered for the $1 million drawing and more than 104,300 “young Ohioans” have registered for the chance to win scholarships.
#OhioVaxAMillion Update: We continue to see increased uptake of the vaccine in response to this promotion. 2,758,470 Ohioans registered for the $1M drawing and 104,386 young Ohioans registered for the scholarship drawing. The first winners will be announced Wednesday @ 7:29 pm. pic.twitter.com/YWBoauGLFt
— Governor Mike DeWine (@GovMikeDeWine) May 24, 2021
According to the Fox News report:
“Under the plan, unveiled on May 12, Ohioans ages 18 and older who have received at least one dose of the vaccine will be eligible for an Ohio lottery. For five weeks, starting this Wednesday, one name will be drawn from the lottery and that person will receive $1 million.
Vaccinated Ohioans under 18 will be entered into a similar drawing for full college scholarships, including tuition, room and board.
The plan drew criticism from both Democratic and GOP lawmakers, who said it isn’t appropriate to use federal pandemic dollars for a contest. Still, the White House has signaled its support.”
DeWine revealed that the age range that has seen the biggest increase in vaccinations following the announcement of the Vax-A-Million lottery has been 16-17-year-olds, which has seen a 94 percent increase.
He also noted a 46% increase in the 18- and 19-year-old age group, and a 55% increase in the 20- to 49-year-old age group.
The first winner of this week’s lottery will be announced on Wednesday, May 26 at 7:29 p.m.