Wisconsin couple claims $316.3 million winning Powerball ticket

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MILWAUKEE (CBS 58) -- A married couple from Oneida in Brown County, Tammy and Cliff Webster, have claimed the winning $316.3 million jackpot-winning Powerball ticket sold by Jackson Pointe Citgo in Green Bay last month. 

The winners opted to take the cash option of $225.1 million rather than annual payments. After federal taxes of $54 million and state taxes of $17.2 million, their final take home amount is $153.9 million.

The ticket had the winning numbers of 6, 14, 25, 33, 46, Powerball 17 from the Jan. 5, 2022 draw. The couple split the $632.6 million jackpot with another winner who bought a ticket in California. The jackpot was the seventh largest in Powerball history.

“We are sincerely grateful for this incredible event,” said Tammy. “We always believed that we had a chance to win if we played and this is a dream come true.”

Cliff agreed and expressed his deep appreciation for what he called “a blessing.”

"This is a wonderful blessing, and we are incredibly thankful and most appreciative of this opportunity,” he added.

The Websters are Native Americans. Tammy is part Oneida and part Sioux, and Cliff is Oneida. Both are members of the Oneida Nation.

But how do we know their names, and why?

In Wisconsin, to claim a big prize if your numbers match up, you'll need to have your name put out there publicly, something lottery officials say is to keep the system honest.

"If your numbers match, the first thing we always tell winners is sign the back of the ticket and secure it," said Wisconsin Department of Revenue Secretary Peter Barca.

He said people also often hire lawyers or financial advisors, sometimes they'll even handle the communications part of getting the winnings, as is the case with the Websters.

In Wisconsin, because of the state's open records law, people will know your name and the city you live in. Any additional information or press appearances are up to you.

It's a similar situation in Illinois, although their website details a one-time PR event for multi-million dollar winners.

In Minnesota, if you win over $10,000 your information is considered private, and in Michigan the only real info given to the public by default is the county of residence.

Barca said there can be issues with anonymous winners, which is the reason for the policy here.

"There have been problems in different states in the past, there was a very celebrated case out of Iowa involving a guy named Eddie Tipton who had found a way to jimmy the system and it was only because people in the community saw he had family members winning that they discovered it," said Barca.

As for the Websters, Cliff said he can keep his promise to Tammy's dad now.

"Her dad is passed away now, but I told her dad that I would always take care of her, and this gives me that opportunity and I will live up to that, and this helps a great deal," said Cliff.

Barca said despite Wisconsin only being an average-sized state, we have the fourth highest number of winners.

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