[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Kent 9-27-1976. Amendments noted where applicable.]
This chapter shall be cited and may be referred to as the "Games of Chance Licensing Ordinance."
This chapter is enacted pursuant to the authority granted by Chapter 960, Laws of the State of New York, 1976, which amended the General Municipal Law of the State of New York by adding a new article, Article 9-A, thereto.
It is declared to be the public policy of the Town of Kent that the raising of funds for the promotion of bona fide charitable, educational, scientific, health, religious and patriotic causes and undertakings where the beneficiaries are undetermined is in the public interest. It hereby finds that as conducted prior to the enactment of this chapter, games of chance were the subject of exploitation by professional gamblers, promoters and commercial interests.
It is hereby declared to be the policy of the Town Board of the Town of Kent that all phases of the supervision, licensing and regulation of games of chance and the conduct of games of chance should be closely controlled and that the laws, ordinances and regulations pertaining thereto should be strictly construed and rigidly enforced.
This chapter shall be applicable to all territory within the limits of the Town of Kent.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- AUTHORIZED ORGANIZATION
- Includes any bona fide religious or charitable organization, bona fide educational or service organization or bona fide organization of veterans or volunteer firemen, which by its character, certificate of incorporation, constitution or by an act of the legislature, shall have among its dominant purposes one or more of the lawful purposes, as defined in this section, provided that each shall operate without profit to its members, and provided that such organization has engaged in servicing one or more of the lawful purposes, as defined in this section, for a period of three years immediately prior to applying for a license under this chapter. No organization shall be deemed an authorized organization which is formed primarily for the purpose of conducting games of chance and for the distribution of the proceeds thereof to itself or any other organization and which does not devote at least 75% of its activities to other purposes set forth in this section. No political party shall be deemed an authorized organization.
- AUTHORIZED GAMES OF CHANCE LESSOR
- An authorized organization, which has been granted a lessor's license, pursuant to the provisions of this chapter, or a municipality.
- GAMES OF CHANCE
- Includes specific games of chance, in which prizes are awarded on the basis of a designated winning number or numbers, color or colors, symbol or symbols determined by chance, but not including games commonly known as "bingo" or "lotto" which are controlled under Article 14-H of the General Municipal Law and also not including slot machines, bookmaking and policy or numbers games, as defined in § 225.00 of the Penal Law. No game of chance shall involve wagering of money by one player against another player.
- LAWFUL PURPOSES
- One or more of the following causes, deeds or activities:
- (1) Those which shall benefit needy or deserving persons, indefinite in number, by enhancing their opportunity for religious or educational advancement, by relieving them from disease, suffering or distress, by contributing to their physical well-being, by assisting them in establishing themselves in life as worthy and useful citizens or by increasing their comprehension of and devotion to the principles upon which this nation was founded and enhancing their loyalty to their governments.
- (2) Those which shall initiate, perform or foster worthy public works or shall enable or further the erection or maintenance of public structures.
- (3) Those which shall otherwise lessen the burdens borne by government or which are voluntarily undertaken by an authorized organization to augment or supplement services which government would normally render to the people.
- LICENSED PERIOD
- A period of time not to exceed 14 consecutive hours.
- NET PROCEEDS
- In relation to the gross receipts from one or more occasions of games of chance, the amount that shall remain after deducting the reasonable sums necessarily and actually expended for supplies and equipment, prizes, stated rental, if any, bookkeeping or accounting services, janitorial services, utilities and license fees; and, in relation to the gross rent received by an organization licensed to permit the use of its premises by another licensee, the amount that shall remain after deducting the reasonable sums necessarily and actually expended for janitorial services and utilities directly attributable thereto.
- ONE OCCASION
- The conducting of any one type of game of chance during any one license period. No series of prizes on any one occasion shall aggregate more than $1,000.
- A sum of money or item of merchandise awarded by the authorized organization to a participant in any one operation or conducting of a game of chance in which participants utilize currency for participation and in which those who are not winners surrender their participating currency at the conclusion of the single operation of such game of chance. No prize for any one participant shall exceed the sum of $100. If a prize is awarded based on odds, only that portion in excess of the winning participant's bet shall be considered as a prize. For the purpose of this section, the value of a prize which consists of merchandise shall be the actual cost of the item of such merchandise.
This chapter shall also include such additional definitions of terms as set forth in Article 9-A of the General Municipal Law.
It shall be lawful for any authorized organization, as defined herein, upon obtaining a license as provided for hereunder and complying with all other rules and regulations of the New York State Racing and Wagering Board and all other rules and regulations as set forth herein to conduct a game or games of chance in the territory of the Town of Kent.
No persons, firm, association, corporation or organization other than a licensee under the terms of this chapter or a bona fide organization of persons 60 years or over, as defined in § 41-19B of this chapter, shall be permitted to conduct such games or shall lease or otherwise make available for conducting games of chance a hall or other premises for any consideration whatsoever, direct or indirect, except as provided herein.
No persons except a bona fide member of a licensed organization or its auxiliary shall participate in the management or operation of such game.
No person shall receive any remuneration for participating in the management of any such game.
No person under the age of 18 years shall be permitted to play any game or games of chance conducted pursuant to any license issued under this chapter. No persons under the age of 18 years shall be permitted to conduct or assist in the conduct of any game of chance conducted pursuant to any license issued under this chapter.
No game shall be held, operated or conducted on or within any leased premises if rental under such lease is to be paid, wholly or partly, on the basis of a percentage of the receipts or net profits derived from the operation of such game.
No authorized organization licensed under the provisions of this chapter shall purchase or receive any supplies or equipment specifically designed or adapted for use in the conduct of games of chance other than from a licensed supplier or from another authorized organization.
The entire net proceeds of any game of chance or of any rental received by an authorized lessor shall be exclusively devoted to the lawful purposes of the organization permitted to conduct the same.
A fee may be charged by any licensee for admission to any room or place in which any game or games of chance are to be conducted under any license issued under this chapter. Every winner shall be determined and every prize shall be awarded and delivered within the same calendar day as that upon which the game was played.
[Amended 9-13-1982 by L.L. No. 6-1982]
No alcoholic beverage shall be offered or given as a prize in any game of chance.
No prize shall exceed the sum or value of $100 in any operation or conducting of a single game of chance.
No single wager shall exceed $2.
[Amended 9-13-1982 by L.L. No. 6-1982]
Limitation on series of prizes.
[Amended 9-13-1982 by L.L. No. 6-1982]
No authorized organization shall award a series of prizes consisting of merchandise with an aggregate value in excess of $1,000 during the successive operations of any one merchandise wheel.
Except for merchandise wheels, no series of prizes on any one occasion shall aggregate more than $200 when the licensed authorized organization conducts five single types of games of chance during any one license period. Except for merchandise wheels, no series of prizes on any one occasion shall aggregate more than $250 when the licensed authorized organization conducts less than five single types of games of chance, exclusive of merchandise wheels, during any one license period.
Except for the limitations on the sum or value for single prizes and series of prizes, no limit shall be imposed on the sum or value of prizes awarded to any one participant during any one occasion or any license period.
Games of chance shall be permitted on the first day of the week, commonly known and designated as Sunday, unless prohibited by Subsection N below.
In no case shall games of chance be conducted on New Year's Eve, Easter Sunday or Christmas Day.
No game or games of chance shall be conducted under any license issued under this chapter more often than 12 times in any calendar year. Subject to the prohibition in Subsection N above, games shall be conducted only between the hours of noon and midnight on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday, only between the hours of noon on Friday and 2:00 a.m. Saturday and only between the hours of noon on Saturday and 2:00 a.m. Sunday. The 2:00 a.m. closing period shall also apply to a legal holiday.
Subject to the applicable provisions of the Alcoholic Beverage Control Law, beer may be offered for sale during the conduct of games of chance but the offering of all other alcoholic beverages is prohibited.
A licensee may advertise the conduct of games of chance to the general public by means of newspaper, circular, handbill and poster, and by one sign not exceeding 60 square feet in area, which may be displayed on or adjacent to the premises owned or occupied by a licensed authorized organization, and when an organization is licensed to conduct games of chance on premises of an authorized games of chance lessor, one additional such sign may be displayed on or adjacent to the premises in which the games are to be conducted. Additional signs may be displayed upon any fire-fighting equipment belonging to any licensed authorized organization which is a volunteer fire company or upon any equipment of a first-aid or rescue squad in and throughout the community served by such volunteer fire company or such first-aid or rescue squad, as the case may be. All advertisements shall be limited to the description of such events as "Games of Chance" or "Las Vegas Night," the name of the authorized organization conducting such games, the license number of the authorized organization as assigned by the Clerk or department and the date, location and time of the event.
[Amended 9-13-1982 by L.L. No. 6-1982]
Within seven days after the conclusion of any license period, the authorized organization which conducted the game, its members who were in charge thereof and, when applicable, the authorized organization which rented its premises therefor shall each furnish to the Town Clerk of the Town of Kent a statement subscribed by the member in charge and affirmed by him as true, under the penalties of perjury, showing the amount of the gross receipts derived therefrom; each item of expense incurred or paid; each item of expenditure made or to be made other than prizes; the name and address of each person to whom each item of expense has been paid or is to be paid, with a detailed description of the merchandise purchased or the services rendered therefor; the net proceeds derived from the conduct of games of chance during such license period; the use to which such proceeds have been or are to be applied; and a list of prizes offered and given, with the respective values thereof. It shall be the duty of each licensee to maintain and keep such book and records as may be necessary to substantiate the particulars of each such statement.
Upon the filing of such statement of receipts, the authorized organization furnishing the same shall pay to the Town Clerk of the Town of Kent, as and for an additional license fee, a sum based upon the reported net proceeds for the license period covered by such statement, an amount as set from time to time by resolution of the Town Board.,
Each applicant for a license to conduct games of chance shall, after obtaining an identification number from the New York State Racing and Wagering Board, file with the Town Clerk of the Town of Kent a written application therefor in a form to be prescribed by said Board, duly executed and verified, in which shall be stated:
The name and address of the applicant, together with sufficient facts relating to its incorporation and organization to enable the Town Clerk to determine whether or not it is a bona fide authorized organization.
The names and addresses of its officers; and the place or places where, the date or dates and the time or times when the applicant intends to conduct games under the license applied for.
The amount of rent to be paid or other consideration to be given, directly or indirectly, for each occasion for use of the premises of another authorized organization licensed under this chapter to conduct such games or for the use of the premises of an authorized games of chance lessor.
All other items of expense intended to be incurred or paid in connection with the holding, operating and conducting of such games of chance and the names and addresses of the persons to whom and the purposes for which they are paid.
The purposes to which the entire net proceeds of such games are to be devoted and in what manner; that no commission, salary, compensation, reward or recompense will be paid to any person for conducting such game or games or for assisting therein except as in this chapter otherwise provided; and such other information as shall be prescribed by such rules and regulations.
The names of not less than four active members of the applicant organization under whom the game or games of chance will be conducted. Each member so designated shall execute a statement that he or she will be responsible for the conduct of such games in accordance with the terms of the license, the rules and regulations of the State Racing and Wagering Board and the provisions of this chapter. Such statement shall be attached to and filed with the written application.
Each applicant for a license to lease premises to a licensed organization for the purposes of conducting games of chance shall file with the Town Clerk of the Town of Kent a written application therefor in a form to be prescribed by the State Racing and Wagering Board, duly executed and verified, in which shall be stated:
The name and address of the applicant.
Designation and address of the premises intended to be covered by the license sought.
A statement that the applicant in all respects conforms with the specifications contained in the definition of "authorized organization" set forth in § 41-5 of this chapter.
The licensed organization to whom the lessor proposes to lease his premises and the rent proposed to be charged therefor.
Such other information as shall be prescribed by said Board.
The Town Clerk of the Town of Kent shall make an investigation of the qualifications of each applicant for a license to conduct games of chance and the merits of each application, within a reasonable time after the filing of the application. The Town Clerk shall issue a license to the applicant for the conduct of games of chance upon the payment of a license fee as set from time to time by resolution of the Town Board for each license period, if the Town Clerk determines that:
The member or members of the applicant designated in the application to conduct games of chance are bona fide active members of the applicant and are persons of good moral character and have never been convicted of a crime, or, if convicted, have received a pardon or a certificate of good conduct.
Such games are to be conducted in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and in accordance with the rules and regulations of the State Racing and Wagering Board.
The proceeds thereof are to be disposed of as provided by this chapter.
No commission, salary, compensation, reward or recompense whatever will be paid or given to any person holding, operating or conducting or assisting in the holding, operation and conduct of such games.
No prize will be given in excess of the sum or value of $100 in any single game and that the aggregate of all prizes given on one occasion under such license shall not exceed the sum or value of $1,000.
The Town Clerk of the Town of Kent shall make an investigation of the qualifications of each applicant for a license to lease premises to another licensee for the purpose of conducting games of chance and the merits of each application within a reasonable time after the filing of the application. The Town Clerk shall issue a license permitting the applicant to lease said premises for the conduct of such games to the authorized organization or organizations specified in the application during the period therein specified or such shorter period as the Town Clerk shall determine, but not to exceed one year, upon payment of a license fee as set from time to time by resolution of the Town Board, if the Town Clerk determines that:
The applicant seeking to lease a hall or premises for the conduct of games of chance to an authorized organization is duly qualified to be licensed under this chapter.
The applicant satisfies the requirements for an authorized games of chance lessor, as defined in § 41-5 of this chapter.
There is a public need and that public advantage will be served by the issuance of such license.
The applicant has filed its proposed rent for each game of chance occasion.
There is no diversion of the funds of the proposed lessee from the lawful purposes, as defined in this chapter.
Such leasing of a hall or premises for the conduct of such games is in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and in accordance with the rules and regulations of the State Racing and Wagering Board.
No license shall be issued under this chapter which shall be effective for a period of more than one year.
On or before the 13th day of each month, the Supervisor of the Town of Kent shall transmit to the State Comptroller from the funds collected in the preceding month:
No application for the issuance of a license to an authorized organization shall be denied by the Town Clerk until after a hearing, held on due notice to the applicant, at which the applicant shall be entitled to be heard upon the qualifications of the applicant and the merits of the application.
Any license issued under this chapter may be amended upon application made to the Town Clerk which issued it, if the subject matter of the proposed amendment could lawfully and properly have been included in the original license and upon payment of such additional license fee, if any, as would have been payable if it had been so included.
Each license to conduct games of chance shall be in such form as shall be prescribed in the rules and regulations promulgated by the State Racing and Wagering Board and shall contain a statement of the name and address of the licensee and of the names and addresses of the member or members of the licensee under whom the games will be conducted; of the place or places where, the date or dates and time or times when such games are to be conducted; of the purposes to which the entire net proceeds of such games are to be devoted; if any prize or prizes are to be given in cash, a statement of the amounts of the prizes authorized so to be given; and any other information which may be required by said rules and regulations to be contained therein. Each license issued for the conduct of any games shall be conspicuously displayed at the place where same is to be conducted at all times during the conduct thereof.
Each license to lease premises for conducting games of chance will be in such form as shall be prescribed in the rules and regulations of the State Racing and Wagering Board and shall contain a statement of the name and address of the licensee and the address of the leased premises, the amount of permissible rent and any information which may be required by said rules and regulations to be contained therein. Each such license shall be conspicuously displayed upon such premises at all times during the conduct of games of chance.
The enforcement officer of the provisions of this chapter shall be the chief law enforcement officer of the Town of Kent.
The enforcement officer shall have and exercise rigid control and close supervision over all games of chance conducted under such license, to the end that the same are fairly conducted in accordance with the provisions of such license, the provisions of the rules and regulations promulgated by the State Racing and Wagering Board and the provisions of this chapter. Such officer and the Board shall have the power and the authority to temporarily suspend any license issued by the Town Clerk of the Town of Kent pending a hearing; and after notice and hearing, the said Board may suspend or revoke the same and additionally, impose a fine in an amount not exceeding $1,000 for violation of any such provisions; and shall have the right of entry, by their respective officers and agents, at all times into any premises where any game of chance is being conducted or where it is intended that any such game shall be conducted or where any equipment being used or intended to be used in the conduct thereof is found, for the purpose of inspecting the same. An agent of the enforcement officer shall make an on-site inspection during the conduct of all games of chance licensed pursuant to this chapter.
Any person, association, corporation or organization who or which shall make any material false statement in any application for any licensed authorized to be issued under this chapter; pay or receive, for the use of any premises for conducting games of chance, a rental in excess of the amount specified as the permissible rent in the license provided for in § 41-12; fail to keep such books and records as shall fully and truly record all transactions connected with the conducting of games of chance or the leasing of premises to be used for the conduct of games of chance; falsify or make any false entry in any books or records so far as they relate in any manner to the conduct of games of chance, to the disposition of the proceeds thereof and to the application of the rents received by any authorized organization; or divert or pay any portion of the net proceeds of any game of chance to any person, association or corporation, except in furtherance of one or more of the lawful purposes, defined in this chapter, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall forfeit any license issued under this chapter and be ineligible to apply for a license under this chapter for at least one year thereafter.
Any person, association, corporation or organization holding, operating or conducting a game or games of chance is guilty of a misdemeanor, except when operating, holding or conducting such game or games:
In accordance with a valid license issued pursuant to this chapter; or
On behalf of a bona fide organization of persons 60 years or over, commonly referred to as "senior citizens," solely for the purpose of amusement and recreation of its members where:
The organization has applied for and received an identification number from the State Racing and Wagering Board.
No player or other person furnishes anything of value for the opportunity to participate.
The prizes awarded or to be awarded are nominal.
No person other than a bona fide active member of the organization participates in the conduct of the games.
No person is paid for conducting or assisting in the conduct of the game or games.
Except as provided in § 41-19B of this chapter, the provisions of this chapter shall be inoperative unless and until a proposition therefor submitted at a general or special election in the Town of Kent shall be approved by a vote of the majority of the qualified electors in the Town of Kent voting thereon. This chapter shall become effective 90 days after such approval by a majority of the qualified electors.
Editor's Note: This chapter was approved by a vote of the majority of the qualified electors in the Town at a general election held on 11-2-1976.
This chapter may be amended from time to time or repealed by the Town Board of the Town of Kent by a vote of 2/3 of said Town Board; and such amendment or repeal, as the case may be, may be effective and operative not earlier than 30 days following the date of enactment of the ordinance affecting such amendment or repeal, and the approval of a majority of the electors of the Town of Kent shall not be a condition prerequisite to the taking effect of such ordinance.