ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — The first winners of Alaska’s new Permanent Fund dividend raffle are expected to be chosen in a drawing later this month, officials said.

The drawing in the first year of a program intended to benefit Alaska public schools is scheduled to be held at a Juneau elementary school Jan. 28, Anchorage Daily News reported Thursday.

The top prize will be $17,396, an amount set by the purchase of 8,698 entry tickets by state residents, officials said.

The state collected $869,800 from the raffle, more than $100,000 less than the figure announced by the state in April.

The second prize is $8,698, third prize is $4,349 and fourth prize is $2,174.50. The figures were also lower than preliminary amounts announced in April, officials said.

Permanent Fund Dividend division Director Anne Weske said raffle notices will be emailed to everyone who elected to have a $100 raffle entry deducted from their 2019 dividend.


Winners will be drawn from a rotating drum with precautions including a chain of custody involving a state trooper and an auditor who will attend the drawing, Weske said.

Weske would not identify who would draw the winning names other than to say they will be state officials.

The governor’s office is scheduled to stream the event online.

Republican state Sen. Click Bishop of Fairbanks proposed the legislation in 2017. The raffle was voted into law in 2018 and implemented last year.

Based on the law’s distribution formula, K-12 schools will split 50% of the proceeds, or $434,900.

Another $217,450 will go to the state’s education endowment fund for further investment and eventual distribution to schools. A prize fund will receive $217,450 to boost the amount of future payouts. The remaining money will be awarded this year.

The drawing is considered a raffle rather than a lottery because a winner is guaranteed, unlike in a state lottery, officials said.