Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 07-03-167.
Title of Rule and Other Identifying Information: New chapter 230-13 WAC, Amusement games.
Hearing Location(s): La Quinta Inn and Suites, 1425 East 27th Street, Tacoma, WA 98421, (253) 383-0146, on July 13, 2007, at 9:30 a.m.
Date of Intended Adoption: July 13, 2007.
Submit Written Comments to: Susan Arland, P.O. Box 42400, Olympia, WA 98504-2400, e-mail Susan2@wsgc.wa.gov, fax (360) 486-3625, by July 1, 2007.
Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Shirley Corbett, Executive Assistant, by July 1, 2007, TTY (360) 486-3637 or (360) 486-3447.
Purpose of the Proposal and Its Anticipated Effects, Including Any Changes in Existing Rules: The gambling commission is rewriting its rules manual using plain English techniques. We anticipate the project will be completed by January 1, 2008. The rules manual is being broken into sections and rewritten a section at a time. This filing is to provide notification that rules regarding amusement games are under review and are not being rewritten in plain English.
Post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-001 Defining "operator." We added a definition of "operator" to the post-January 1, 2008, amusement games rules to clearly define whom we are referring to when we use the word "operator" in the amusement game rules. Using "operator" is a way of avoiding repeating "licensees or unlicensed organizations" in each rule we have written. Unlicensed organizations are allowed by RCW 9.46.0321 to have limited gambling activities without obtaining a license as long as their gross gambling receipts are below $5000. Amusement games are one of their permitted activities.
Post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-010 Time and place of public meetings. In the post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-010, the director grants approval for new amusement games. The pre-January 1, 2008, WAC Authorized amusement games -- Types, standards and classifications, states, "Operators may introduce new games...without prior approval of the commission." We have reevaluated this rule with Director Day and are making a policy recommendation that the current rule means "commission" as in "commission staff"; and not as "commissioners." Therefore, Director Day will stand in for the commissioners in approving new amusement games.
We also eliminated the "twelve-month test period" for new amusement games in the post-January 1, 2008, WAC. Staff is certain that this was a temporary measure added during the time when crane games were being introduced into the state and are now concerned that the "test period" would allow a number of unauthorized games to be placed for public use without our having a chance to inspect and approve them.
Post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-040 Group 6 -- Strength test amusement game standards. The language in the pre-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-20-508 Authorized amusement games -- Types, standards and classifications, uses the verb "may" to indicate how the game should operate, as in "This may include hand, arm, or whole body strength and may also require the player to use a tool or instrument to strike an object or target, which may cause the object to be propelled..."
We changed that language in the post-January 1, 2008, WAC to "must" because we feel that the more stringent language was intended in the rule, but the writer used the more permissive sounding language by mistake. We do not believe we will be limiting the way this group of games is played by making the language more restrictive. There are few of these games and all of them require the actions described, though the pre-January 1, 2008, WAC states that they "may" be operated in this way; "must" fits the way the requirements are enforced in the field.
Post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-060 Group 10 -- Shooting amusement game standards. This post-January 1, 2008 rule, combines two rules pre-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-20-508, which became effective January 6, 1994, and pre-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-20-660, which was filed June 25, 1976. Neither has been revised since then, and it is likely that the game they were written to enforce is no longer being offered or played.
We removed the use of a "combined score" to determine winners mentioned in pre-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-20-508 Authorized amusement games -- Types, standards and classifications, subsection (7)(j)(iii)(D) because we know of no instances where a combined score is or could be used in a shooting game.
Post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-090 Adult supervision of unattended amusement games. This pre-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-20-680 Commercial amusement games -- Operation restrictions, like several others, references a list of locations included in another rule -- pre-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-04-138 Commercial amusement games -- Authorized locations, which duplicates a good deal of the language contained in RCW 9.46.0331. We wish to remove this sort of cross-referencing to other WACs and instead have operators refer to the RCW covering amusement games.
We added a definition of "unattended amusement game" to this post-January 1, 2008 rule. We also removed the percentage operators must pay to charitable or nonprofit organizations that was listed in the pre-January 1, 2008, WAC because the requirement already exists in post-January 1, 2008 rule, WAC 230-13-160 Basing rent on a percentage of gross receipts.
Lastly, we took out requirements about areas where school age minors must not play amusement games because they are already listed in RCW 9.46.0331 Amusement games authorized -- Minimum rules.
Post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-105 Attended amusement game requirements. We removed the pre-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-20-510 Attended amusement games -- Operational restrictions,reference to following the RCW and WAC because this requirement is duplicative of post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-085 Control and maintenance of amusement games.
Post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-145 Marking the difference between objects thrown in multiple amusement games on the same premises. We removed the requirement in the first sentence of the pre-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-20-620 Amusement games -- Objects to be thrown to be uniform -- Similar games not to use different objects unless designated, "No person licensed to conduct amusement games shall conduct any such game within the state of Washington wherein the winning of a prize depends upon the player's ability to throw or project an object unless all such objects available to any player in said game are uniform in size and weight" because it is already explained in the post-January 1, 2008, standards for groups of amusement games that require something to be thrown.
Post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-150 Amusement game locations. We removed the redundant requirement in pre-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-04-138 Commercial amusement games -- Authorized locations about the rental amount paid to charitable or nonprofit organizations, because post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-160 Basing rent on a percentage of gross receipts, explains the requirement for rents.
We also propose removing the repetitive list of locations where operators may place amusement games in pre-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-04-138 Commercial amusement games -- Authorized locations about the rental amount paid to charitable or nonprofit organizations, because they are already spelled out in RCW 9.46.0331.
Post-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-13-175 Recordkeeping for unlicensed charitable and nonprofit amusement games. We removed the requirement in pre-January 1, 2008, WAC 230-08-060 Commercial amusement game records, that records in commercial amusement games include proving that prizes were awarded to winners. This requirement doesn't seem necessary since the records of the prizes bought and the prizes awarded are already required.
Reasons Supporting Proposal: To make our rules manual more user friendly. To make rules easier to find and understand.
Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 9.46.070.
Statute Being Implemented: Not applicable.
Name of Proponent: Washington state gambling commission, governmental.
Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting: Susan Arland, Rules Coordinator, Lacey, (360) 486-3466; Implementation: Rick Day, Director, Lacey, (360) 486-3446; and Enforcement: Mark Harris, Assistant Director, Lacey, (360) 486-3579.
No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. A small business economic impact statement has not been prepared pursuant to RCW 19.85.025 and/or the proposed rule change clarifies language or rules without changing the effect.
A cost-benefit analysis is not required under RCW 34.05.328. The Washington state gambling commission is not an agency that is statutorily required to prepare a cost-benefit analysis under RCW 34.05.328.
April 24, 2007
AMUSEMENT GAME RULES
(2) Commercial businesses or nonprofit or charitable organizations may apply for licenses for amusement games.
(3) Charitable or nonprofit organizations also may conduct amusement games without a license when authorized to do so under RCW 9.46.0321 and 9.46.0331.
(4) Operators must operate amusement games as either:
(a) An attended amusement game.
(i) An "attended amusement game" means an amusement game that requires the presence or assistance of a person (attendant) in the regular operation of the game; and
(ii) These games must award a merchandise prize to players if players achieve the objective with one cost of play; or
(b) A coin or token activated amusement game.
(i) A "coin or token activated amusement game" means an amusement game that uses a mechanical, electronic, or electro-mechanical machine to allow the player to activate the game by inserting coins or tokens; and
(ii) These games may dispense merchandise prizes, or coupons, tickets, or tokens redeemable for merchandise prizes.
(5) Amusement games must not award additional plays as prizes.
(2) If the director notifies the operator that the proposed game does not meet the standards or otherwise violates the gambling laws or rules, the operator:
(a) May not introduce the game; and
(b) If already introduced, must remove it from play until the operator brings it into compliance with the authorized group.
(1) In ball toss or kick amusement games:
(a) All balls for each game must be uniform in size and weight; and
(b) All targets for each game must be the same size and weight or the operator must color code the target and advise the players of the difference in targets if the difference is not visible to players; and
(c) Target weight must not exceed seven and one-half pounds; and
(d) A target must not have a loose or floating weight.
(2) If the goal of the game requires estimating the speed of the ball thrown or kicked, operators must offer the player at least three balls to practice estimating the speed and one ball for the actual throw or kick.
(3) If operators use a ping pong or similar light weight ball in games requiring players to toss the ball into a dish, saucer, cup, or similar container, they must place water in the bottom of each container.
(1) In dart amusement games:
(a) All darts must be uniform in size and unaltered with the point sharp, or functional if suction-cup darts, and all feathers or tail sections intact; and
(b) The target area for all dart games must be of a material capable of being penetrated and retaining a metal tip dart, or holding a suction-cup dart; and
(c) The target area must be in the rear of the stand and must be at least three feet but not more than fifteen feet from a foul line.
(2) In "add 'em up games," where players must achieve a predetermined score, all darts stuck on the lines of the target must result in another throw by the player. Players have the right to add up the score of the darts thrown.
(1) The operator must advise the player as to the degree that the hoop(s) or ring(s) must go over the target; and
(2) Hoops or rings for each game must be uniform in size and shape and must be capable of going over the target; and
(3) Targets used at an individual stand must be the same size. If not, the operator must post signs or use color codes to point out the different sizes.
(1) The game must have a clear and unobstructed thirty-six inch vertical airspace above the target area or surface; and
(2) The target or surface must be level and not altered to give an advantage to the operator; and
(3) Any game which has a target area of four square inches or less must award a prize if any part of the coin or token is within the target area.
(1) Hand and eye coordination amusement games must include one or more of the following:
(a) Striking a moving or fixed object or target including a sequence of moving or fixed objects or targets; or
(b) Launching object(s) at target(s) from a mechanism. Players must aim object(s) so they may land in, on, or go through a target(s), including catching the target(s) or having the object(s) caught in the target(s). In games where players launch, toss, or catapult objects at target(s), the launching machine must respond in an identical manner on repetitive uses when the player applies or selects an equal amount of force; or
(c) Dropping object(s) onto target area(s) or surface(s), including covering the area(s), or surface(s) with the object(s). If a player must cover a spot or specific target area, then the target area must be a circular spot and:
(i) The player must receive at least five circular discs to drop on the target or target area; and
(ii) The diameter of the circular discs used to cover the target or target area must be at least sixty-four percent of the diameter of the target spot or area; and
(iii) The target spot or area must be permanently affixed to a solid surface; or
(d) Capturing, lassoing, hooking, or getting a hold of an object(s) and causing them to move or change position; or
(e) Guiding object(s) or images through a pattern, maze, or task; or
(f) Climbing on, over, through, or around object(s); or
(g) Similar tasks.
(2) For any game requiring a player to perform a task normally associated with playing billiards or pool, operators must allow players to use a regulation billiard table, balls, and cue.
(1) Test hand, arm, or whole body strength; or
(2) Require the player to use a tool to strike an object or target, and cause the object to travel a specific distance; or
(3) Require the object(s) to strike another object(s) to achieve the goal of the game.
(1) Allow at least twenty seconds playing time per operation; and
(2) Have a crane or claw capable of reaching, picking up, and dispensing all prizes in the machine; and
(3) Have the machine controls clearly labeled as to their function; and
(4) Have prizes loose and not packed, arranged, lodged, or intertwined in the machine in any way that would prevent the crane or claw from picking up and dispensing the prize.
(1) Coin fall games must:
(a) Have level surfaces and contain similar coins; and
(b) Have the outcome of the game determined by player's skill.
(2) Coin fall games may contain obstacles which if properly passed or struck by a coin, award additional tickets.
(3) If coin fall games have obstacles, operators must:
(a) Turn on the obstacles before the player inserts the coin; and
(b) Keep them on long enough to allow the player to attempt to strike or pass the obstacles.
(4) Operators may set merchandise prizes on the coins, tokens, or other surfaces in the game and if the prize is pushed into a hole or chute, then it is awarded to the player. All prizes must fit down the hole or chute.
(1) One player:
(a) Attempting to score a predetermined number of points by landing in a target area; or
(b) Striking and/or knocking down target(s); or
(2) More than one player:
(a) Attempting to score a predetermined number of points; or
(b) Striking and/or knocking down target(s); or
(c) Landing in a target area. The first player to achieve the goal wins a prize.
(1) The game may require a player to:
(a) Destroy or obliterate all or part of the target; or
(b) Hit the target or specific portion of it; or
(c) Hold an electronic beam, light beam, or water stream on the target or portion of it to achieve a specific result.
(2) The projectiles may include pellets, BBs, corks, water, electronic beams, light beams, balls, or suction-cup darts.
(3) The targets may be stationary or mobile.
(4) Operators and players must comply with all safety requirements of the local city or county ordinances.
(5) A short range shooting gallery must give players, at least:
(a) Four shots to shoot out a target which has a diameter of one-quarter inch or less; or
(b) One shot at each target which they must strike. Targets must be at least one-half inch square and may include a bulls-eye section which players must shoot out without touching the outside of the target.
(6) "Shoot-out-the-star" games must give players at least one hundred projectiles in an automatic mechanism to shoot out a star which is no more than one and one-quarter inch from point to point.
(7) Operators may determine a winner and award a prize based on the number of players participating.
(8) If suction-cup darts are used in the game, players must receive another turn if the dart does not stick to the target area.
(9) If targets must be knocked over or off of a shelf, then the bases of the targets must be uniformly shaped front and rear.
(10) If players must destroy or obliterate all or part of a target to win, then the players must have the right to have the target brought to them and to visually inspect it at any time during the game or at the conclusion of the game.
(1) Cake walk amusement games where players walk on a numbered or color-coded circle while music is played. When the music stops, a player wins a prize depending on the number or color of the portion of the circle the player is standing on; and
(2) Fish pond amusement games where players receive a prize each time they play by:
(a) Either hooking or capturing a fake fish floating in water or similar object with a number or symbol on the bottom. The number or symbol of the fish or object corresponds to a prize; or
(b) Having the operator place a prize directly onto the "line" or catching device of the player from behind a curtain or similar obstruction.
OPERATING AMUSEMENT GAMES
(a) The name and address of the operator; and
(b) The name and address of the person managing the games at the location; and
(c) The date(s) and the location where the operator will conduct the amusement games.
(2) Operators must have all amusement game equipment available for inspection by local law enforcement or us at least the two hours before operating.
(3) Operators may place individual amusement games at locations where amusement games already exist without renotifying local law enforcement.
(a) Amusement parks; or
(b) Regional shopping malls; or
(c) Movie theaters; or
(d) Bowling alleys; and
(e) Miniature golf course facilities; and
(f) Skating facilities; and
(g) Amusement centers. "Amusement center" means a permanent location whose primary source of income is from the operation of ten or more amusement devices; and
(h) Restaurants; and
(i) Grocery or department stores. A "department or grocery store" means a business that offers the retail sale of a full line of clothing, accessories, and household goods, or a full line of dry grocery, canned goods, or nonfood items plus some perishable items, or a combination of these. A department or grocery store must have more than ten thousand square feet of retail and support space, not including the parking areas; and
(j) Any premises that a charitable or nonprofit organization currently licensed to operate punch boards, pull-tabs, or bingo controls or operates.
(2) All coin or token activated amusement games must have a coin acceptor capable of taking money for one play and may have an additional acceptor to include paper money.
(3) Operators using amusement games that do not return change must have a change-making bill acceptor or the ability to get change in the immediate vicinity of such games. All amusement games using paper money acceptors must either:
(a) Return change; or
(b) Clearly disclose to the player before play that change is not returned and tell them where at the location they may get change.
(1) Closely monitor and control all games to ensure they are operated according to all provisions of TITLE 230 WAC and chapter 9.46 RCW; and
(2) Protect players from fraud and game manipulation; and
(3) Maintain all games or machines in proper condition to ensure they comply with their authorized amusement game group.
(a) "School aged minors" means anyone at least six, but not yet eighteen years old.
(b) An "unattended amusement game" means a game that does not require the player to interact with an attendant, for example, a coin activated game.
(2) An adult supervisor must ensure that school-age minors:
(a) Do not enter or play amusement games during school hours at regional shopping centers; and
(b) Do not enter or play amusement games during school hours at and after 10:00 p.m. on any day at any location mentioned in RCW 9.46.0331.
(1) The player's physical or mental abilities play an important and integral role in determining the outcome of the game; and
(2) The success rate of the average player would improve with repeated play or practice.
(a) Collect payment from the player(s); and
(b) Give equipment or components to the player(s) to participate in the game; and
(c) Award merchandise prize(s) to any winners.
(2) Attendants must not:
(a) Materially assist players; or
(b) Participate in the game.
(2) Only full and regular members of charitable or nonprofit organizations may supervise or manage amusement games.
(3) Organizations may use nonmembers for positions that are not of a supervisory or management nature if the nonmembers are:
(a) Employees of the organization, hired on a regular or part-time basis, and employed primarily for purposes other than to conduct the activities; or
(b) Volunteers under the supervision of a member and not directly or indirectly compensated for their work.
(a) Fees charged for play; and
(b) Rules of play; and
(c) Prizes or number of tickets to be won; and
(d) Any variation in the size or weight of objects used in the game which is not readily visible to the player; and
(e) Name of the operator; and
(f) Booth number, if applicable; and
(g) Amusement game group number.
(2) For coin or token activated games, if all aspects of the activity are within four feet of the player, operators may use lettering smaller than one and one-half inches in height as long as they prominently post the sign and make it legible to players. The operator must ensure that the manufacturer either:
(a) Preprints the sign and information on the machine; or
(b) Attaches it to the machine.
(2) Operators must only award prizes that are posted. However, after a player has won two or more prizes, operators may offer that player the opportunity to exchange those prizes for one or more other prizes, but only if that prize was on display during the play of the game.
(3) Operators must not allow winners to forfeit previously won prize(s) in exchange for another play.
(4) Operators may give winners tickets which winners may combine with other tickets won and redeem for a merchandise prize.
(1) Regional shopping centers; and
(2) Movie theaters; and
(3) Bowling alleys; and
(4) Miniature golf course facilities; and
(5) Skating facilities; and
(6) Amusement centers; and
(7) Department or grocery stores within a regional shopping center as defined in WAC 230-13-090 (2)(b); and
(8) Any business whose primary activity is to provide food service for on premises consumption.
(2) Operators may accept tokens, scrip, or tickets, but only if:
(a) The equivalent value in cash for each token, scrip, or ticket is printed on the token, ticket, or scrip; and
(b) Tokens, tickets or scrip are not redeemable for cash; and
(c) Tickets or scrip show the name of the operator or sponsor.
AUTHORIZED LOCATIONS AND RENTAL OF AMUSEMENT GAMES OR PREMISES
(2) Operators may only conduct commercial amusement games at locations set out in RCW 9.46.0331.
(3) Operators must conduct amusement games in conformance with local zoning, fire, health, and similar regulations.
(2) All contracts become part of the operator's license file. If commercial amusement game operators violate any terms of a contract, it may be grounds for suspension or revocation of their license.
(3) Class B or above licensees may enter into contracts with business owners of any of the following locations to operate amusement games on their premises:
(a) Amusement parks; or
(b) Regional shopping centers; or
(c) Any location that possesses a valid license from the Washington state liquor control board and prohibits minors on their premises; or
(d) Movie theaters; or
(e) Bowling alleys; or
(f) Miniature golf course facilities; or
(g) Skating facilities; or
(h) Amusement centers; or
(i) Department or grocery stores having more than ten thousand square feet of retail and support space, not including the parking areas; or
(j) Charitable or nonprofit organizations with a premises licensed for Class A amusement games; or
(k) Any commercial business that provides food service for on premises consumption as its primary activity.
(4) Operators must not place amusement games at a location which does not have a valid license.
(1) May base the rent or consideration paid to a Class A commercial amusement game location on a percentage of revenue the activity generates if the method of distribution is specific.
(2) May not base the rent or consideration paid to a charitable or nonprofit organization on a percentage of revenue the activity generates unless the amount returned to the organization is equal to or exceeds twenty-two percent of the gross gambling receipts. Operators must pay the organization at least once a month.
(3) If located at regional shopping centers, may use a percentage of receipts to pay rental leases. They are also exempt from the profits restrictions of RCW 9.46.120(2).
(1) A reasonable price for the gambling equipment or for use of the gambling equipment; and
(2) A lump sum or hourly rate established in the competitive market; and
(3) Not based on a percentage of the gross receipts, income, or profit.
RECORDKEEPING FOR AMUSEMENT GAMES
(a) Gross gambling receipts received from players; and
(b) Value of prizes awarded to winners.
(2) Records must include, at least:
(a) The gross gambling receipts collected from amusement games at each location, with receipting records; and
(b) An entry for each withdrawal of receipts from the games. Coin or token activated amusement games only require an entry of the ending meter reading, the number of plays, and gross gambling receipts at the end of each month; and
(c) A summary of the operation of the activity. This includes, at least, coin-in meter readings and gross gambling receipts. Operators must provide these coin-in meter readings and gross gambling receipts to charitable or nonprofit organizations each time they service a game or disburse money.
(3) Licensees must report at least monthly the number and actual cost of merchandise prizes awarded for each location.
(4) For amusement games that issue tickets for the redemption of prizes, licensees must at least log the beginning and ending nonresettable ticket out meters or ticket numbers during each collection of funds from each game.
(5) Licensees must provide the full details for all amusement game operating expenses.
(a) Determine the amount of gross gambling receipts received from amusement games; and
(b) Identify individuals responsible for receiving and controlling them.
(2) Records must include, at least, the full names, addresses, and phone numbers of employees and members involved in the activity.