During their meeting on Tuesday morning, Tarrant County Commissioners will consider implementing an incentive program that would pay people somewhere between $50 to $100 to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
“The most effective tool to mitigate COVID-19 and end the pandemic is vaccination,” wrote Tarrant County Administrator G. K. Maenius in an overview of the proposal for the incentive program to the county commissioners.
As of Sept. 8, 969,977 Tarrant County residents are fully vaccinated, according to the latest numbers provided by the county. That number represents 56% of the eligible population, ages 12 and up, but represents 46% of the overall population of Tarrant County when kids younger than 12 are factored in.
Other large counties in Texas have already started vaccine incentive programs. In Harris County, where Houston is, residents have been offered a $100 cash card for getting vaccinated as part of a program that has been in place since mid-August. In that time, daily vaccination rates have increased by 706%, according to figures provided by Harris County.
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Dallas County has offered a variety of incentives, including a $25 gift card to Walmart, a $20 coupon sheet for the upcoming State Fair of Texas, and tickets to Six Flags Over Texas and the Dallas Zoo.
The Dallas ISD is offering $500 for staffers and $50 for students who can prove they're vaccinated by Nov. 15. Students will receive a gift card while staffers will be paid in their paychecks.
Among the considerations for Tarrant County Commissioners include exactly how much to pay people, what form of payment to deliver, when to start the program, and how long it should run.