The jackpot has been rolling since November 7.
Powerball offers two jackpot payment options: the $700 million jackpot prize paid over 29 years in 30 graduated payments; or the cash option, which is approximately $428.4 million.
Powerball tickets are $2 per play.
The odds of winning the jackpot are 1 in 292,000,000.
The highest Powerball jackpot previously was $590.5 million won on May 18, 2013. The ticket was sold in Florida to Gloria Mackenzie.
The last winning Powerball ticket sold in Georgia was on September 14, 2011 when Kathy Scruggs of Lithonia won $25 million. Scruggs had asked for a Mega Millions ticket but was accidentally given a Powerball ticket.
At the current pace of participation, Multi-State Lottery Association officials say the payout to one lucky winner could top $700 million. It’s likely the prize will easily surpass the record of $656 million set in 2012.
The $700 million payout would come in the form of a 30-year annuity. Should the winner chose a lump sum payment, the amount would drop to just more than $428 million, before taxes. Most players chose the lump sum option.
The first Powerball drawing was held in 1992. Since then, Powerball has become the No. 1 lottery game in the United States. Currently 44 states participate in what is essentially a nationwide lottery.
So, what could you buy with $400 million?
• Controlling interest in baseball’s Tampa Bay Rays. ($600 million)
• Naming rights to one of the Smithsonian Institution’s Centers ($60 million)
• Pay off the national debt of Bermuda ($160 million)
• 12 F-15 fighter jets ($30 million each)
• 50 M1 Abrams battle tanks ($60 million each)
• The St. Louis Blues NHL team ($330 million)
• 10 AH-64 Apache attack helicopters ($35 million each)
• The Dubai – a spiffy $350 million super yacht
• The Hope Diamond ($350 million)
• 350 million Hershey Chocolate bars, maybe more since you would be buying in bulk.