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Long Island coworkers claim record $437 Million Mega Millions Jackpot


Tue, Feb 19th 2019 02:15 pm

A group of Long Island area co-workers have claimed the $437 million jackpot for the Jan. 1 Mega Millions drawing, the largest jackpot in New York Lottery history.

The winning Mega Millions numbers for the drawing were 34-44-57-62-70, with Mega Ball 14. The 23-member group has claimed the prize through the New Life 2019 LLC. They opted to take the cash value of the annuitized prize, a single lump sum payment totaling $262,213,914 and will receive a net check of $176,155,308 after required state and federal withholding.

Representatives of New Life 2019 LLC said they play the Lottery weekly. Each member puts a dollar in an envelope that one member takes to purchase the group’s tickets. The jackpot winning ticket was purchased as part of a New York Lottery $5 Super Pack. The Super Pack offers one Quick Pick game for each of New York’s jackpot games: Mega Millions, Powerball and Lotto. It is the first time the purchase of a Super Pack has included a winning jackpot ticket.

As they all started showing up for work two days after the drawing, word spread that they won the Mega Millions jackpot. There was a lot of crying, hugging and jumping around that day. Many of the members double- and triple-checked the ticket in disbelief.

The representatives said that most of the employees will continue working, because they view themselves as a family and not just co-workers. Plans among the New Life group for the winnings include new houses, college funds for their children, and travel.

The winning ticket was purchased at Brookville Auto Service on Route 25A in Glen Head. The retailer will receive a $10,000 bonus from the New York Lottery for selling the jackpot winning ticket.

Prior to New Life 2019’s $437 million win, the biggest jackpot in New York Lottery history was won by Harold Diamond of Wurtsboro. The retired elementary school principal was the sole winner of a $326 million Mega Millions jackpot in 2014. The last New York Mega Millions jackpot winner was Wayne Harris of Homer, who won $105 million in 2017.

The Mega Millions ticket sales for the $437 million jackpot also had a significant fiscal impact in New York. During the 10-week roll-up that began on Oct. 26, 2018, and ended with New Life’s win, Aid to Education accrued more than $25.4 million, while lottery retailers earned $4.36 million in commissions.

The New York Lottery continues to be North America’s largest and most profitable Lottery, contributing $3.37 billion in fiscal year 2017-18 to help support education in New York. The lottery’s contribution represents approximately 13 percent of total state education aid to local school districts.

New Yorkers struggling with a gambling addiction, or who know someone who is, can find help by calling the state's toll-free, confidential HOPEline at 1-877-8-HOPENY (1-877-846-7369) or by texting HOPENY (467369).

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