For months Clark County government has encouraged residents to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
Now it’s putting money where its mouth is.
In a trial program at Eldorado High School this weekend, the county will be providing $100 gift cards to 1,000 people who receive their first shot.
“I just want to make it as easy as possible,” said Clark County Commissioner Tick Segerblom, who pushed for the program. “Show up and get vaccinated, we'll give you $100. The simpler, the better.”
Segerblom said he hoped the effort would reach people who are “focused on other things in their life. They haven't really thought about this that much. We're just trying to get the people who are on the fence.”
The first 500 people to get vaccinated on Saturday and Sunday will receive the gift cards, which are funded by a portion of the $440 million in federal pandemic relief earmarked for Clark County.
The federal funding “was designed to help us get people vaccinated, among other things,” Segerblom told State of Nevada. “If it works, fantastic, but if it doesn't work, we'll try something else.”
Similar efforts have been launched in other markets and President Joe Biden has supported municipalities offering incentives to increase vaccination rates.
"There are lots of cities around the country that have done it and been very successful," Segerblom said. "Lines form around the block."
With a full vaccination rate of just almost 50%, Nevada remains below the national rate of 55% and in the bottom half of all states.
"The most important thing from my perspective in Las Vegas is getting people vaccinated so we can reopen our economy," Segerblom said. "We need people to be able to come to Las Vegas and gamble have fun."
Participants for this weekend's vaccinations may register at the Southern Nevada Health District website, but some walk-ins also will be accommodated.
Tick Segerblom, Clark County commissioner
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