MIDDLETOWN, N.Y. (CBSNewYork) — Politicians weren’t the only big winners on Election Day.
One lucky person holds the winning ticket for Tuesday night’s $326 million Mega Millions jackpot.
The ticket was purchased using the Quick Pick option at a Valero gas station just off Route 17 in Middletown in Orange County, lottery officials said.
“That is amazing,” said Pine Bush resident Joe DeJon.
“We’d go for five years with no property taxes whatsoever for the entire city. That would be the equivalent of what’s at stake here,” said Middletown Mayor Joeseph DeStefano said. “Our budget is about $55 million a year.”
“It’s pretty awesome that it happened here because every time you hear it happens out in the west, or in Florida, or California so it’s good that a town like this gets this type of jackpot,” said Middletown resident Ignacio Rodriguez.
The news has gas station employees all smiles and wondering who the lucky winner is, CBS2’s Lou Young reported.
“We get a lot of trucks, a lot of people come through,” employee Alicia Miosi said, adding that the winner could be anybody. “Who knows?”
The owner of the gas station said the store gets a $10,000 bonus for selling the winning ticket and he’s not even sure when it was sold, Young reported.
The single ticket matched all six numbers: 9, 15, 24, 39 and 41, plus the Mega Ball of 1.
“Whoever purchased this ticket is about to have their life changed forever,” said Gardner Gurney, Acting Director of the Division of the Lottery. “Whoever and wherever you are: sign the back of your ticket and keep it in a safe place, and when you’re ready to claim, we look forward to meeting you.”
For the winner to receive all $326 million, they would have to take 30 annual installments — roughly $10,866,000 a year before taxes, Young reported.
“I’d take $11 million dollars a year. (You wouldn’t take the lump sum?) No,” said Circleville resident Joe Girardi.
The lump sum would be a one-time-only payment of $197.4 million before taxes, Young reported.
On Wednesday, regular customers spoke to CBS2’s Weijia Jiang about what they would do with all of that cash.
“A dog sanctuary to help pets,” one said
“A couple of nice cars,” another told her.
The prize money could land you 815 top of the line Lamborghinis, or a few private islands at just $50-million a piece.
Tickets sold in California, New Jersey and Texas, which matched five numbers, but missed the Mega Ball number, are worth $1 million each, lottery officials said. One ticket sold in New York also matched five numbers, but is worth $4 million because the person played the optional Megaplier.
Anyone willing to make due with less could stop in Clifton, where two tickets worth $1-million each were sold in less than a week.
“Clifton is the place to be. I guess you come here to buy tickets,” Pat Clements said.
The jackpot was originally $321 million, but increased sales made it grow by $5 million, lottery officials said.
The jackpot has been rolling since late August. It’s the eighth largest in Mega Millions history. The chances of hitting the jackpot was 1 in 259,000,000.
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