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Senate of Pennsylvania
Session of 2021 - 2022 Regular Session


Posted: February 9, 2022 02:35 PM
From: Senator John I. Kane and Sen. Timothy P. Kearney, Sen. Jay Costa
To: All Senate members
Subject: Increasing Charitable Giving through Sports Raffle Charities Act Improvements
Many charitable organizations took a financial hit during the COVID19 Pandemic. This includes the charitable organizations for Pennsylvania’s professional and college sports teams that conduct 50/50 ticket raffles during home games. Some stadiums were empty during home games and some stadiums had a limited number of fans.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, these sports teams learned many lessons and developed ideas on how to improve Act 56 of 2019 (Sports Raffle Charities Act) to help them raise money to support Pennsylvanians through Pennsylvania charities. Some of the changes we are proposing are similar to Sports Raffle Charity Laws in other states. The pandemic demonstrated that teams with statewide audiences can increase their charitable contributions by responsibly administering 50/50 raffles to include fans tuning in from home. Some of the supported charities include local youth athletic programs, collegiate athletic programs, ALS programs, cancer research, medical and healthcare improvement programs, educational and mentoring programs, Ronald McDonald House Charities, Boys and Girls Clubs, Autism research, and so much more.
The legislation we are proposing includes the following changes to the Pennsylvania Sports Raffle Charities Act:
  • Allows teams to sell 50/50 raffle tickets in person and online during all home games.
  • Allows teams to accept payments for 50/50 raffle tickets through cash, debit, credit cards,  PayPal, and Venmo and similar electronic payment programs and applications.
  • Allows teams to sell tickets to fans that are watching the game outside of the stadium on television, a laptop, smart phone, or at a Pennsylvania restaurant or tavern.
  • Requires teams that make online sales to use geo-fencing software to ensure that tickets are sold to people that are physically located in Pennsylvania at the time of purchase.
  • Requires age verification and other compliance measures to ensure that people buying 50/50 raffle tickets are of legal age to purchase tickets and to collect 50/50 winning ticket proceeds.
  • Requires sports teams to print the toll-free problem gambling assistance help number on physical tickets sold inside of stadiums or arenas and require it to be displayed on e-tickets.
We hope you will join us to improve support for Pennsylvania charitable organizations.

Introduced as SB1190