BAYONNE, NJ (PIX)—Nobody in the Tri-State won the nearly $580 million Powerball lottery jackpot, but more than a dozen local losers are now lottery successes, and one county in particular in our area had nearly a half dozen losers who became millionaires overnight.
They correctly picked five of the lottery's six numbers, which results in at least a $1 million payout. Three people in Connecticut were near-winners, four in New York and eight in New Jersey.
Of those eight, five of them were from Union County, in North Jersey. One of the tickets was purchased at The Country Store, a deli on Broadway in Bayonne. Its front window is covered in dozens of winning tickets for payouts as low as $100, but on the day after it sold a ticket worth 10,000 times that much, the store's owner, Padma Patel, is bursting with pride.
"I am happy," she told PIX11 News, "I am very happy," she said, holding on to the -r in "very" with delight. That may be due in part to the fact that she and her husband, who own the store, will get a small bonus payment from the New Jersey Lottery for selling a ticket of next-highest value in a lottery game.
Connecticut retailers are even more fortunate. For selling a $1 million runner-up ticket, they get a $2000 bonus. Speaking of lucky Connecticut Yankees, one of the Constitution State's three near-perfect winners actually doubled his money -- he selected the power play option with his ticket, which automatically doubles the payout. He is today $2 million richer.
New York lottery ticket vendors get no bonus for selling a second highest payout ticket, but they do get a $100,000 bonus for selling a Powerball jackpot ticket. A winning Mega Millions ticket in New York also results in a bonus well into the thousands for the retailer.
The New York Lottery office on Long Island saw winners for both types of tickets on Thursday. Philip Cimino of Garden City Park, Long Island, won a $32 million Mega Millions jackpot, while Donald Gilbert of Staten Island picked five of the Powerball numbers, while not correctly guessing the Powerball. He is now a millionaire, before taxes.