[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Phelps: Art. I, 9-12-1977 as L.L. No. 1-1978; Art. II, 8-24-1992 as L.L. No. 3-1992. Amendments noted where applicable.]
[Adopted 9-12-1977 as L.L. No. 1-1978]
This Article shall be known and may be cited as the "Games of Chance Licensing Law." The Town Board of the Town of Phelps hereby declares 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. Therefore, the Town Board also hereby declares that it is desirable for the Town of Phelps to hereby exercise the local option granted it by § 187 of Article 9-A of the General Municipal Law of the State of New York.
As used in this Article, the following terms shall have the following meanings:
- AUTHORIZED GAMES OF CHANCE LESSOR
- An authorized organization which has been granted a lessor's license pursuant to the provisions of this Article or a municipality.
- AUTHORIZED ORGANIZATION
- Any bona fide religious or charitable organization or bona fide educational or service organization or bona fide organization of veterans or volunteer firemen which, by its Charter, certificate of incorporation, constitution or Act of the legislature of New York State, shall have among its dominant purposes one or more of the lawful purposes as defined in this Article, provided that each such organization has engaged in serving one or more of the lawful purposes as defined in this Article for a period of three years immediately prior to applying for a license under this Article. No organization shall be deemed an "authorized organization" which is formed primarily for the purpose of conducting games of chance and 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 subsection. No political party shall be deemed an "authorized organization."
- AUTHORIZED SUPPLIER OF GAMES OF CHANCE EQUIPMENT
- Any person, firm, partnership or organization licensed by the Board to sell or lease games of chance equipment or paraphernalia which meets the specifications and regulations established by the Board. Nothing herein shall prevent an authorized organization from purchasing common articles, such as cards and dice, from normal sources of supply of such articles or from constructing equipment and paraphernalia for games of chance for its own use. However, no such equipment or paraphernalia constructed by an authorized organization shall be sold or leased to any other authorized organization without written permission from the Board.
- The New York State Racing and Wagering Board.
- The Town Clerk of the Town of Phelps.
- GAMES OF CHANCE
- 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 of New York and also not including "slot machines," "bookmaking" and "policy or numbers games" as defined in § 225.00 of the Penal Law of New York. 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:
- A. 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 or 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.
- B. Those which shall initiate, perform or foster worthy public works or shall enable or further the erection or maintenance of public structures.
- C. 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 LEASE
- A written agreement between a lessor and lessee under the terms of which the lessee is entitled to the possession, use or occupancy of the whole or part of any premises from any noncommercial or nonprofit organization for which the lessee pays rent to the lessor and likewise undertakes to pay substantially all of the regularly recurring expenses incident to the operation and maintenance of such leased premises.
- A. 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 according to a schedule of compensation prescribed by the Board, janitorial services and utility supplies if any, license fee and the cost of bus transportation, if authorized by the division.
- B. In relation to the gross rent received by an organization licensed to conduct such games for 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 utility supplies directly attributable thereto if any.
- 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 or 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 in any one operation or conducting of such single game of chance shall exceed the sum of $100. If a prize is awarded based on odds, only that portion in excess of the winning participants bet shall be considered as a "prize." For the purpose of this Article, the value of a prize which consists of merchandise shall be the actual cost of the item of such merchandise.
The conduct of games of chance authorized by this Article are subject to the following restrictions:
No person, firm, association, corporation or organization, other than a licensee under the provisions of this Article, shall conduct such game 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 in § 89-4 of this Article.
No game of chance 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 Article shall purchase or receive any supplies or equipment specifically designed or adapted for use in the conduct of games of chance from other than a supplier licensed by the Board or from another authorized organization.
The entire net proceeds of any game of chance and of any rental shall be exclusively devoted to the lawful purposes of the organization permitted to conduct the same.
No prize shall exceed the sum or value of $100 in any operation or conducting of a single game of chance as provided in § 89-2 of this Article. No single wager shall exceed $10.
No series of prizes on any one occasion of games of chance shall aggregate more than $1,000 as provided in § 89-2 of this Article.
No person except a bona fide member of any such organization, its auxiliary or affiliated organization shall participate in the management or operation of such game, as set forth in § 89-14 of this Article.
No person shall receive any remuneration for participating in the management or operation of any such game.
The unauthorized conduct of a game of chance shall constitute and be punishable as a misdemeanor, as provided in § 189 of the General Municipal Law of New York.
To conduct games of chance.
Each applicant for a license shall, after obtaining an identification number from the Board, file with the Clerk a written application therefor in a form to be prescribed by the 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 Clerk to determine whether or not it is a bona fide authorized organization.
The names and addresses of its officers; 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 Article 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 to be 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 Article otherwise provided; and such other information as shall be prescribed by such rules and regulations.
In each application there shall be designated not fewer than four active members of the applicant organization under whom the game or games of chance will be conducted, and to the application shall be appended a statement, executed by the members so designated, that they will be responsible for the conduct of such games in accordance with the terms of the license and the rules and regulations of the Board and of this Article.
Authorized games of chance lessor. Each applicant for a license to lease premises to a licensed organization for the purposes of conducting games of chance therein shall file with the Clerk:
A written application therefor in a form to be prescribed by the Board, duly executed and verified, which shall set forth 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 § 89-2 of this Article.
Such other information as shall be prescribed by the Board.
The Clerk shall make an investigation of the qualifications of each applicant and the merits of each application, with due expedition after the filing of the application.
Issuance of licenses to conduct games of chance. If the Clerk shall determine that the applicant is duly qualified to be licensed to conduct games of chance under this Article; 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; that such games are to be conducted in accordance with the provisions of this Article and in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Board and that the proceeds thereof are to be disposed of as provided by this Article, and if the Clerk is satisfied that 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 any such games except as in this Article otherwise provided; and that no prize will be given in excess of the sum of value of $100 in any single game and that the aggregate of all prizes given on one occasion under said license shall not exceed the sum or value of $1,000, it shall issue a license to the applicant for the conduct of games of chance upon payment of a license fee of $25 for each license period.
Issuance of licenses to authorized games of chance lessors. If the Clerk shall determine 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 Article; that the applicant satisfies the requirements for an authorized games of chance lessor as defined in § 89-2 of this Article; that the Clerk shall find and determine that there is a public need and that public advantage will be served by the issuance of such license; that the applicant has filed its proposed rent for each game of chance occasion; that there is no diversion of the funds of the proposed lessee from the lawful purposes, as defined in this Article; and that such leasing of a hall or premises for the conduct of such games is to be in accordance with the provisions of this Article and in accordance with the rules and regulations of the Board, it 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 Clerk shall determine, but not to exceed one year, upon payment of a license fee of $50.
On or before the 30th day of each month, the Clerk in which the licensed property is located shall transmit to the State Comptroller a sum equal to 50% of all authorized games of chance lessor license fees and the sum of $15 per license period for the conduct of games of chance collected by the Clerk pursuant to this section during the preceding calendar month.
No license shall be issued under this Article which shall be effective for a period of more than one year.
No authorized organization shall be denied by the 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 Article may be amended, upon application made to the 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 Board and shall contain a statement of the name and address of the licensee, 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 and the date or dates and time or times when such games are to be conducted and 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; and each license issued for the conduct of any games shall be conspicuously displayed at the place where the 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 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, and each such license shall be conspicuously displayed upon such premises at all times during the conduct of games of chance.
The 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 Board and the provisions of this Article, and such officer and the Board shall have the power and the authority to temporarily suspend any license issued by the Clerk pending a hearing, and after notice and hearing, the 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 appropriate officer shall make an on-site inspection during the conduct of all games of chance licensed pursuant to this Article.
Service of alcoholic beverages. 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.
Games of chance may be conducted on the first day of the week, commonly known and designated as "Sunday." Notwithstanding the foregoing provisions of this section, no games of chance shall be conducted on Easter Sunday, Christmas Day or New Year's Eve.
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 Article. No person under the age of 18 years shall be permitted to any license issued under this Article.
No game or games of chance shall be conducted under any license issued under this Article more often than 12 times in any calendar year. Games shall be conducted only between the hours of 12:00 noon on Saturday and 2:00 a.m. Sunday. The 2:00 a.m. closing period shall also apply to a legal holiday.
No person shall hold, operate or conduct any games of chance under any license issued under this Article except an active member of the authorized organization to which the license is issued, and no person shall assist in the holding, operating or conducting of any game of chance under such license except such an active member or a member of an organization or association which is an auxiliary to the licensee or a member of an organization or association of which such licensee is an auxiliary or member of an organization or association which is affiliated with the licensee by being, with it, auxiliary to another organization or association. No game of chance shall be conducted with any equipment except such as shall be owned or leased by the authorized organization so licensed or used without payment of any compensation therefor by the licensee. At least two officers, directors, trustees or clergy of the authorized organization shall upon request certify, under oath, that the persons assisting and holding, operating or conducting any game of chance are bona fide members of such authorized organization, auxiliary or affiliated organization. Upon request by an officer or the department, any such person involved in any such games of chance shall certify that he/she or she has no criminal record. No items of expense shall be incurred or paid in connection with the conducting of any game of chance pursuant to any license issued under this Article except those that are reasonable and are necessarily expended for games of chance supplies and equipment, prizes, stated rental, if any, bookkeeping or accounting services according to a schedule of compensation prescribed by the Board, janitorial services and utility supplies, if any, and license fees and the cost of bus transportation, if authorized by such officer.
Not more than $2 shall 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 Article. The officer may, in his discretion, fix a minimum fee. 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. No alcoholic beverage shall be offered or given as a prize in any game of chance.
No game of chance conducted or to be conducted in the Town of Phelps shall be advertised as to its location, the time when it is to be or has been played or the prizes awarded or to be awarded or transportation facilities to be provided to such game by means of newspapers, radio, television or sound trucks or by means of billboards, posters or handbills or any other means addressed to the general public, except that one sign not exceeding 60 square feet in area 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 the premises of an authorized games of chance lessor, an 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 licensee which is a volunteer fire company or upon any first aid or first aid or rescue squad in and throughout the community or communities served by such volunteer fire company or such first aid or rescue squad, as the case may be.
Within seven days after the conclusion of any licensed period, the authorized organization which conducted the same and its members who were in charge thereof and, when applicable, the authorized organization which rented its premises therefor shall each furnish to the Clerk a statement subscribed by the member in charge and affirmed by him/her as true, under the penalties of perjury, showing the amount of the gross receipts derived therefrom and each item of expense incurred or paid and each item of expenditure made or to be made other than prizes, the name and address of each person to whom each such 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 and 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, and it shall be the duty of each licensee to maintain and keep such books 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 Clerk as and for an additional license fee a sum based upon the reported net proceeds, if any, for the license period covered by such statement and determined in accordance with such schedule as shall be established from time to time by the Board, but such additional license fee shall not exceed 5% of the net proceeds for such occasion. The Clerk shall remit the fees provided for in this subsection to the Treasurer of Ontario County, New York.
The Clerk and the Board shall have power to examine or cause to be examined the books and records of:
Any authorized organization which is or has been licensed to conduct games of chance, so far as they may relate to games of chance, including the maintenance, control and disposition of net proceeds derived from games of chance or from the use of its premises for games of chance, and to examine any manager, officer, director, agent, member or employee thereof under oath in relation to the conduct of any such game under any such license, the use of its premises for games of chance or the disposition of net proceeds derived from games of chance, as the case may be.
Any authorized games of chance lessor, so far as they may relate to leasing premises for games of chance, and to examine said lessor or any manager, officer, director, agent or employee thereof under oath in relation to such leasing. Any information so received shall not be disclosed except so far as may be necessary for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this Article.
Any applicant for or holder of any license issued or to be issued under this Article aggrieved by any action of an officer or the Clerk to which such application has been made or by which such license has been issued may appeal to the Board from the determination of said officer or the Clerk by filing with such officer or the Clerk a written notice of appeal within 30 days after the determination or action appealed from, and upon the hearing of such appeal, the evidence, if any, taken before such officer or the Clerk and any additional evidence may be produced and shall be considered in arriving at a determination of the matters in issue, and the action of the Board upon said appeal shall be binding upon such officer or the Clerk and all parties to said appeal.
No person, association, corporation or organization lawfully conducting or participating in the conduct of games of chance or permitting the conduct upon any premises owned or leased by him/her or it under any license lawfully issued pursuant to this Article shall be liable to prosecution or conviction for violation of any provision of § 225.00 of the Penal Law of the State of New York or any other law or ordinance to the extent that such conduct is specifically authorized by this Article, but this immunity shall not extend to any person or corporation knowingly conducting or participating in the conduct of games of chance under any license obtained by any false pretense or by any false statement made in any application for license or otherwise or permitting the conduct upon any premises owned or leased by him/her or it of any game of chance conducted under any license known to him/her or it to have been obtained by any such false pretense or statement.
Any person, association, corporation or organization who or which shall make any material false statement in any application for any license authorized to be issued under this Article; 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 § 89-9 of this Article; 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 Article, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and subject to a fine of not more than $1,000 or not more than one year imprisonment, or both, and shall forfeit any license issued under this Article and be ineligible to apply for a license under this Article 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:
In accordance with a valid license issued pursuant to this Article; or
On behalf of a bona fide organization of persons 60 years of age 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 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.
The provisions of the Article shall remain inoperative in the Town of Phelps unless and until a proposition therefor submitted at a general or special election in such municipality shall be approved by a vote of the majority of the qualified electors in the Town of Phelps.
Editor's Note: This Article passed at such referendum 11-8-1977.
This Article may be amended, from time to time, or repealed by the Town Board of the Town of Phelps by a two-thirds (2/3) vote on such amendment or repeal, as the case may be; and the approval of a majority of the electors of the Town of Phelps shall not be a condition prerequisite to the taking effect of such local law or ordinance.
[Adopted 8-24-1992 as L.L. No. 3-1992]
AUTHORIZED ORGANIZATION — An authorized organization as defined in Subdivision 4 of § 476 of the General Municipal Law.
- The specific game of chance as defined in Subdivision 3 of § 476 of the General Municipal Law.
Authorized organizations may, upon the obtaining of a license from the Town Clerk, conduct games of bingo within the town as provided in Article 14-H of the General Municipal Law, as the same may be amended from time to time and as provided further in this Article. Such games of bingo shall be conducted in accordance with the general state law and with the rules and regulations of the New York State Racing and Wagering Board and this Article, as the same may be amended from time to time.
The conduct of games of bingo authorized by this Article shall be subject to those restrictions contained in § 479 of the General Municipal Law and in other applicable statutory and case law and the rules and regulations of the New York State Racing and Wagering Board.
Games of bingo on the first day of the week, commonly known as "Sunday," may be conducted pursuant to this Article and appropriate statutes and regulations.
Any person, association, corporation or organization who or which shall make any false statement in any application for any license authorized to be issued for the conduct of games of bingo in the town or in any statement annexed thereto or who or which shall violate any of the provisions and restrictions contained in Article 14-H of the General Municipal Law and this Article shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and subject to a fine of not more than $1,000, imprisonment not to exceed one year, or both, and shall forfeit any license issued to it under this Article authorizing the conduct of games of bingo in the town and shall be ineligible to apply for another license for at least one year hereafter.