The results are in and the first annual Hometown Heroes raffle proved a winner for the state’s men and women who are returning home from the conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Senate Bill 5806, sponsored by Sen. Steve Conway, established the raffle last year as a way to fund the Veterans Innovations Program (VIP) which was on pace to run out of money this year if a funding source was not found.
On Tuesday, Washington’s Lottery presented a gift of $150,000 to the Washington State Department of Veterans Affairs, which will go toward funding the VIP program. VIP provides crisis and emergency relief, as well as education, training, and employment assistance for Washington veterans returning from post-9/11 conflicts.
“This program was a great success, but there’s so much more we can do for the people that sacrifice so much for the rest of us,” Conway said. “I’m proposing more legislation that will fine tune the raffle and maximize our ability to give back even more to our returning veterans.”
The Lottery said in a statement that 98 percent of the tickets for the raffle were sold, a high total for a first-time game. It also said that it plans to make a second contribution to the program later this year once unclaimed prizes and final costs are calculated.