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Revised charitable gaming law signed into law

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 19 December 2017 at 12:49 pm

State Assemblyman Steve Hawley says revisions to the Charitable Gaming Act will allow non-profits, churches and service groups to raise needed funds. The governor has signed the legislation into law.

The legislation doesn’t take effect until 180 days to give New York State Gaming Commission time to make “tweaks,” Hawley said.

“I am so proud of the work we have done and I am hopeful that moving forward we continue to advocate for our charitable and non-profit organizations and make more changes to the state’s gaming laws,” Hawley said in a statement today.

Some local organizations have raffled off cars and motorcycles, generating tens of thousands of dollars. But the state said many of those events were out of compliance.

The governor and Legislature earlier this year approved some updates to the state’s gaming laws, including expanding the definition of an “authorized organization” to include volunteer ambulance workers and organizations that have been in existence for one year, allowing television and internet advertising of raffles and allowing personal checks to be acceptable payments for games of chance.

But Hawley said the legislation earlier this year didn’t go far enough. The latest revision will allow groups to accept credit and debit cards as a form of payment for raffles, resulting in higher revenues raised for the organizations, Hawley said.

“This is a tremendous victory and crucial first step toward reforming our gaming laws for the tens of thousands of non-profits, fire departments, churches, Rotary and Kiwanis Clubs and charitable organizations throughout the state,” Hawley said.

“After a long uphill climb, and with much help from my colleagues in the Assembly and Senate, we have made important changes to New York’s gaming laws that open the conversation and serve as a catapult to tackle more changes this year.”

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