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AGO Opinions with Topic: GAMBLING
AGO 1971 No. 21 >  July 27, 1971
GAMBLING - LOTTERIES - FAIRS - AGRICULTURAL
CONDUCT OF CERTAIN GAMES BY AGRICULTURAL FAIRS Applicability of chapter 280, Laws of 1971, 1st Ex. Sess., to bingo, raffles, amusement games, to other gambling games, and to games of skill, when conducted as part of an agricultural fair.
AGO 1972 No. 30 >  December 27, 1972
LOTTERIES - GAMBLING - OPERATION OF BINGO GAMES UNDER CHAPTER 9.47 RCW
LOTTERIES ‑- GAMBLING ‑- OPERATION OF BINGO GAMES UNDER CHAPTER 9.47 RCW (1) A member operating a bingo game under the provisions of RCW 9.47.390 may be compensated for doing so at a fixed hourly or other periodic rate so long as his compensation is not based upon a percentage of the receipts or net profits derived from the operation of such game. (2) Such compensation as is paid to a member operating a bingo game under the provisions of RCW 9.47.390 may not be paid out of the proceeds derived from the game by the bona fide charitable or nonprofit organization which is operating said bingo game.
AGO 1973 No. 15 >  June 26, 1973
LOTTERIES - GAMBLING - CITIES AND TOWNS - LICENSES
LOTTERIES ‑- GAMBLING ‑- CITIES AND TOWNS ‑- LICENSES The provisions of § 7, chapter 218, Laws of 1973, Ex.Sess., under which gambling activities licensed by the state gambling commission may be prohibited by a first class city, do not extend to cities in excess of twenty thousand which have adopted the optional municipal code.
AGO 1975 No. 16 >  July 24, 1975
GAMBLING - LOTTERIES - CRIMES - APPLICABILITY OF CHAPTER 9.46 RCW TO SPORTS POOLS AND CERTAIN DICE OR CARD GAMES
GAMBLING ‑- LOTTERIES ‑- CRIMES ‑- APPLICABILITY OF CHAPTER 9.46 RCW TO SPORTS POOLS AND CERTAIN DICE OR CARD GAMES The proprietor or owner of a restaurant, tavern, coffee shop or similar establishment would be engaged in the conduct of prohibited gambling activities within the meaning of chapter 9.46 RCW if such proprietor or owner, without other participation in the game, were  (1) To maintain on the premises for use by its patrons, customers or others a board, sheet or other similar paraphernalia to be used in the conduct of a football, baseball or other sports pool, and in connection with such pool were to assign scores, receive wagers and distribute anything of value to a contestant, although without fee, commission or other profit for such services;  (2) Except to the extent of card games licensed under RCW 9.46.030, to furnish dice or playing cards to patrons, customers or others on the premises of the establishment to be utilized by such persons for gambling in order to determine which person in their number shall pay the cost of the meals, drinks or other sustenance purchased on the premises;  (3) To maintain on the premises for the convenience of his patrons, customers or others, any of the aforesaid devices which are in fact owned by such persons and utilized by them for the purposes set forth in (2) above.
AGO 1986 No. 10 >  July 9, 1986
TAXATION - GAMBLING - ENFORCEMENT
USE OF PROCEEDS FROM TAX ON GAMBLING ACTIVITIES Revenue from the tax on gambling activities authorized by RCW 9.46.110 must be used chiefly, or for the most part, to enforce gambling laws. However, revenues from the tax on amusement games must be used solely for the enforcement of gambling laws.
AGO 1978 No. 9 >  March 28, 1978
GAMBLING - LICENSES - CORPORATIONS - CONDUCT OF FUND-RAISING EVENT
GAMBLING ‑- LICENSES ‑- CORPORATIONS ‑- CONDUCT OF FUND-RAISING EVENT Although a bona fide charitable or nonprofit organization organized primarily for purposes other than the conduct of gambling activities may, under the circumstances set forth in RCW 9.46.030(3), conduct bingo, raffles and amusement games without obtaining a license from the State Gambling Commission to do so, that organization may not lawfully conduct a "fund-raising event" as defined in RCW 9.46.020(23) without obtaining such a license.
AGO 1987 No. 20 >  October 2, 1987
GAMBLING - AMUSEMENT GAMES
CERTAIN GAMES CONSTITUTE GAMBLING AND ARE AMUSEMENT GAMES If the outcome of a mechanical or coin-operated game is "as the result of the operation of an element of chance" and "depends in a material degree upon the skill of the contestant," such a game may constitute gambling and be an "amusement game" under RCW 9.46 [chapter 9.46 RCW]. The Gambling Commission may approve "digger" or "crane" games as amusement games if warranted by the facts and all statutory criteria have been met. The award of prizes directly from the game does not affect the classification of a game as an "amusement game" or "gambling device."
AGO 1996 No. 13 >  August 6, 1996
STATE CONSTITUTION - GAMBLING - LOTTERIES - INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM
Vote required to authorize Tribal-sponsored electromechanical gaming 1.  Under the Washington State Constitution, article 2, section 24, an initiative authorizing forms of electromechanical gaming not previously authorized would require a sixty percent majority vote to be effective. 2.  The Indian Gaming Regulatory Act (25 U.S.C. §§ 2701 et. seq. ) does not preempt state authority to set state policy on gambling, or to determine the procedures by which state gambling laws will be adopted and/or modified.
AGO 1969 No. 9 >  April 30, 1969
LOTTERIES - GAMBLING - PINBALL MACHINES - PUNCHBOARDS - PULL TABS - CARDS - BINGO
LOTTERIES - GAMBLING - PINBALL MACHINES - PUNCHBOARDS - PULL TABS - CARDS - BINGO - AUTHORITY TO LICENSE - CITY - COUNTY (1) The possession of (a) a multiple coin "bingo" type pinball machine, or (b) a punchboard or pull tab device each of which is more fully described in the body of this opinion is unlawful per se , under RCW 9.47.030 and 9.47.110, without extrinsic proof that the particular machine or device is being operated for the winning or losing of money or property. (2) The games of poker, rummy, pinochle, cribbage, or panguingue, and similar card games, when played for either limited or unlimited stakes in an establishment which is paid either a fixed amount per hour or per hand by the players, violate RCW 9.47.010 and 9.47.020. (3) The game of bingo, when played for a money or merchandise prize by persons who have paid a valuable consideration to play, constitutes an illegal lottery under the provisions of RCW 9.59.010.  (4) The fact that an illegal gambling game or lottery is conducted by a charitable, religious or fraternal organization, with all proceeds to be devoted to the purposes of the organization, does not constitute a defense to criminal liability. (5) A city or county may not license and thereby permit the possession or operation of any gambling game or device which is violative of any state statute.
AGO 1999 No. 7 >  July 21, 1999
GAMBLING - GAMBLING COMMISSION
Authority of gambling commission to define pull-tabs to include video pull-tabs The state gambling commission has delegated authority to define what is including in the term “pull-tabs”, but this authority does not extend to define “video pull-tabs” as “pull-tabs”, because a paper ticket or folder is a fundamental element of a pull tab.
AGO 1953 No. 138 >  September 25, 1953
MUNICIPAL CORPORATIONS - POWERS - TAXATION - LICENSE - GAMBLING - LICENSE OR TAX BY
TAX AN ILLEGAL ACTIVITY A city of the first class has no power granted to it to tax or license an illegal activity such as gambling.
AGLO 1979 No. 2 >  January 15, 1979
CITIES AND TOWNS - OPTIONAL MUNICIPAL CODE - TAXATION - HORSE RACING - GAMBLING
EXCISE TAX ON PARIMUTUEL WAGERING A noncharter code city may levy a city business and occupation tax on the gross receipts of parimutuel machines at a horse race course that is situated within the corporate limits of the city.
AGLO 1976 No. 21 >  March 19, 1976
COUNTIES - CITIES AND TOWNS - TAXATION - GAMBLING
USE OF COUNTY OR CITY GAMBLING TAX REVENUES Under RCW 9.46.113 law enforcement activities related to the enforcement of state gambling laws must be regarded as having the "first call" on municipal gambling tax revenues authorized by RCW 9.46.110.
AGLO 1977 No. 35 >  August 10, 1977
GAMBLING - LOTTERIES - IMPOSITION OF FEES FOR LICENSED SOCIAL CARD GAMES
GAMBLING ‑- LOTTERIES ‑- IMPOSITION OF FEES FOR LICENSED SOCIAL CARD GAMES On and after the effective date of chapter 76, Laws of 1977, 1st Ex.Sess., it will be legally permissible for a limited fee to be charged for playing licensed social card games in accordance with the provisions of §§ 1(18) and 2(11) of that act.
AGLO 1973 No. 74 >  July 11, 1973
LOTTERIES - GAMBLING - LICENSE - CHAPTER 141, LAWS OF 1972, EX. SESS. - CHAPTER 218, LAWS OF 1973, EX. SESS.
LOTTERIES ‑- GAMBLING ‑- LICENSE ‑- CHAPTER 141, LAWS OF 1972, EX. SESS. ‑- CHAPTER 218, LAWS OF 1973, EX. SESS A bona fide charitable or non profit organization which has been conducting raffles over the past several months in accordance with chapter 280, Laws of 1971, Ex. Sess., as amended by chapter 141, Laws of 1972, Ex. Sess. (RCW 9.47.300, et seq.) and/or a county ordinance to the same effect may not continue to do so without obtaining a license from the state gambling commission after chapter 218, Laws of 1973, Ex. Sess., becomes effective on July 16, 1973.
AGLO 1974 No. 49 >  April 16, 1974
LEGISLATURE - LOTTERIES - GAMBLING
INITIATIVE AND REFERENDUM While the ultimate approval of sixty percent of the voters will be required to pass a referendum bill authorizing lotteries under Article II, § 24 of the state Constitution, the legislature may pass and order a referendum on such a bill by a simple majority vote of the members of both houses.
AGLO 1974 No. 95 >  November 19, 1974
GAMBLING - LOTTERIES - LEGAL STATUS OF CERTAIN CONTEST
SCATTERBOARDS Scatterboards, as described in this opinion, constitute an illegal lottery and the conduct of gambling under chapter 9.46 RCW.
AGO 2010 No. 3 >  February 1, 2010
GAMBLING - CHARITY - STATE EMPLOYEES - ETHICS IN PUBLIC SERVICE ACT
Raffles Conducted By State Employees For Charitable Or Benevolent Entity

1.         RCW 9.46.0209 authorizes state employees to conduct charitable raffles, but such raffles may benefit a person or family in need through a qualified charitable or benevolent entity.  However, state employees may not conduct a raffle for the purpose of raising funds that will be transmitted directly to an individual person or family in need.  2.         A charitable raffle conducted by a group of state employees may benefit a family, family member, or friend of a state employee conducting the raffle, only if that recipient has been designated as a person or family in need by a qualified charitable or benevolent entity.

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