Powerball jackpot hits 310 million dollars

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Courtesy of Seattlepi.com:

Powerball’s jackpot has hit $310 million, the biggest jackpot ever available in Washington state and the fifth highest jackpot in the game’s history.

A draw game played in 41 states, Powerball debuted in Washington in 2010. In January, lottery officials doubled the price of a ticket to $2, in hopes of drawing more players with bigger jackpots and better odds.

The game now starts with a jackpot of $40 million, instead of $20 million. Its second tier prize is now $1 million, instead of $200,000.

The jackpot has since been on a rapid climb, going from $250 million on Wednesday to $310 million for Saturday’s drawing. Payable over 30 years, the prize also has a cash payout option of $193.4 million.

The largest Powerball jackpot was $365 million, won by eight workers in a Nebraska meat-packing plant in 2006.

The local winner of a recent $1 million Powerball prize was still a mystery Thursday, two weeks after buying the winning ticket in Fife.

“Sometimes, people aren’t ready to cash in,” said a Washington’s Lottery spokesperson. “We’ve had people take a month or two to claim. A lot of time, they wait to meet with a financial advisor.”

That winner had these numbers: 04-19-28-29-47 and a “powerball” of 05.

Saturday is also the drawing for Hit 5, whose current $5.6 million jackpot is the game’s third highest jackpot in the state.

Visit seattlepi.com’s home page for more Seattle news. Contact Vanessa Ho at 206-448-8003 or vanessaho@seattlepi.com, and follow her on Twitter as @vanessaho.

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