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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2013 - 2014 Regular Session


Posted: April 24, 2014 12:16 PM
From: Senator Richard L. Alloway, II
To: All Senate members
Subject: Tavern Gaming Legislation Revisions
In the near future, I plan on introducing legislation that will revise problems that were overlooked in the recently passed Tavern Gaming Legislation.

My legislation will make changes to Act 90, that was passed by the Senate and House in November, 2013. Amending the act of December 19, 1988 (P.L.1262, No.156), entitled, as amended, "An act providing for the licensing of eligible organizations to conduct games of chance, for the licensing of persons to distribute games of chance, for the registration of manufacturers of games of chance, and for suspensions and revocations of licenses and permits; requiring records; providing for local referendum by electorate; and prescribing penalties," further providing for definitions, for games of chance permitted, for distributor licenses, for major league sports drawing, for club licensee, for distribution of proceeds, for records and for raffle tickets; providing for background checks; further providing for enforcement; providing for tavern gaming and for a host municipality tavern games tax; establishing the Host Municipality Tavern Games Local Share Account; providing for a report of the Legislative Budget and Finance Committee; and making an editorial change.

My legislation will specifically focus on the following:
  • Removing the requirement for a 15-year FBI background investigation and review by the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (PGCB) which costs the licensee $1,000 or more. Currently, the licensee is already given a background check by the Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board (PLCB) to be approved for a liquor license; furthermore, the licensee and license history is reviewed every two years before the liquor license is renewed.
  • Removing the correlation of penalties being directly related to the removal of the liquor license. I maintained the stiff civil fines and included an additional "three strikes you are out" clause for the tavern games license. This change is being made due to the fact that there is a heavy tax on tavern games by the Commonwealth and the fact that tavern games are not related to alcohol.
  • Changing the distribution of revenue for the tavern games licensees. Currently the splits are 60% of the profit is paid to the Commonwealth, 5% to the host municipality, and the tavern game licensee may retain 35%. This legislation will change the splits to 50% to the the Commonwealth, 5% to the host municipality, and 45% may be retained by the tavern game licensee.
In addition to the three major revisions to the legislation, I will be making a few technical changes that will benefit Tavern Games Licensees.

I believe this legislation will be beneficial to our small hard working businesses, beneficial to the charities that are supported by these businesses, and will produce the projected revenue from tavern games for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

Please join me in cosponsoring this important piece of legislation.

Introduced as SB1412