With the Powerball at over $400 million for Wednesday’s drawing, lottery fever has hit Minden.
People from all over the city are buying up tickets with big dreams of what they would do with all that money.
Susie Day, a foster “parent” for Cedar Hill Animal Rescue, says if she and her husband won the jackpot, she would build a shelter for animals.
“I’d have the largest rescue facility Louisiana has ever seen,” she said. “It would be state of the art.”
Josh Hilton, store manager of Bon Temps/Valero, says ticket sales have increased and he expects it to spike until the drawing on Wednesday.
“We do see a good influx of people buying lottery tickets,” he said. “Last year, it got up to some crazy number, and we almost doubled the amount of our sales.”
Most of the lottery sales he sees are Powerball, he says, and the other lotto jackpots, such as the Louisiana Lottery, MegaMillions and the scratch-offs go into one batch.
“From what we can tell, it’s the Powerball that sees the big jump,” he added. “If it doesn’t hit on Wednesday, we’ll see more people. It just kind of gets progressively more every time the jackpot doesn’t get hit.”
If the jackpot hits $400 million as predicted, it will exceed the size of the sixth largest prize in Powerball history, lottery officials say. In 2013, someone in South Carolina won $399.4 million.
According to the Multi-State Lottery Association, the odds of winning the Powerball jackpot are one in 292.2 million.
As for paying taxes on the prize, that depends on where the winner lives, they say. Officials say the federal government will take approximately 25 percent before the winner files their tax return. Then they will pay state tax at the winner’s state income tax rate.
Lottery officials say someone from Pennsylvania won $2 million and three players from California, Connecticut and South Carolina all won a $1 million prize.