-- Proposed changes to Indiana’s charitable gambling regulations seek to
expand the industry and streamline licensing, but don’t mention the
possibility of allowing payment to the people who organize and work the
Republican Rep. Ben
Smaltz is carrying the legislation, which would allow for higher prize
payouts and more nonprofits to offer charity gaming, The Journal Gazette
reported . The bill will also reduce the number of license types from 11 to
allows communities to have funding for a variety of things that otherwise
would be government supported -- good causes,” said Smaltz, who chairs the
House Public Policy Committee, which will hear the legislation. “It just
needed (to be) cleaned up.”
legislation isn’t seeking to alter the requirement that organizations use
volunteers to hold events, such as bingo, raffles, festivals and casino
An Indiana Gaming
Commission survey recently found that 63 percent of organizations support
paying workers in some form, with 43 percent of those groups preferring to
pay workers directly. Other organizations supported offering reduced
membership fees, tipping, free meals or other forms of compensation.
finance officer for the Waynedale American Legion Post 241, said charity
gambling events help sustain the post, but that the group is having a
difficult time finding volunteers to run events. The commission is avoiding
policy discussions and focusing on making the system more efficient, said
Sara Gonso Tait, the commission’s executive director.
“We are really just
seeking to modernize the charity gaming statute,” Tait said.
Smaltz said he
doesn’t support changing the current law because nonprofits must follow IRS
regulations and are limited to how much they can put into salaries.
“If they pay
people, then is it truly charitable gaming that they are doing?” he asked.
charity gaming in 1992. The industry had $413 million in gross revenue in
2017, with $66 million in profits. Funds go to churches, veterans groups,
volunteer fire departments and youth programs.