PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — People in Portland, Oregon, struggling financially during the COVID-19 pandemic will be able to try again for a prepaid $500 VISA debit card to cover household expenses.
Unlike past gift card giveaways organized by the city, the cards will not be awarded on a first-come, first-serve basis. Instead, 4,000 applications submitted in the three-hour window will be chosen through a lottery.
During past lottery rounds, the system has been overwhelmed within minutes.
In a virtual press conference Monday, Portland Mayor Ted Wheeler said this application portal was the quickest way to get federal aid money that came to the city through the CARES Act out the door. The city is required to distribute all the federal dollars by the end of the year.