Senator drops push for paid dealers at charity games

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

A proposal tp allow charities to pay people to run bingo, poker and other gambling games is too touchy of an issue to tackle this session, Indiana Senate Public Policy Chairman Ron Alting said Friday morning.

Members of fraternal clubs have complained to Alting that it’s difficult to round up volunteers to run their games, and the Republican from Lafayette had hoped to advance legislation on the matter this session. Instead, he’ll request a summer study committee.

“We really need to make sure we’re not opening a bucket of worms for professional gaming,” Alting said.

The Indiana Gaming Commission has cracked down on clubs that violated the rules against paying bingo callers and dealers.

An American Legion post in New Haven, near Fort Wayne, was accused last year of paying its bingo managers close to $1 million over several years. Five people faced criminal charges after a gambling commission sting caught a 71-year-old woman ferrying envelopes full of cash from Post 330 to a local restaurant, The Journal Gazette reported in September.

The gambling commission has fined two other clubs, the Fraternal Order of Eagles Aerie No. 2455 in Albion and the Loyal Order of Moose Lodge No. 281 in Vincennes, for paying people to work events.

Two less controversial bills on charity gaming are making their way through the Legislature. Sen. Randy Head authored a bill that would allow national organizations with Indiana affiliates to obtain a single license that could be applied to multiple games, such as raffles. That bill is now with the House Public Policy Committee.

Rep. Bob Cherry proposed allowing poker-night patrons to deal, as long as they don’t play that round. Oftentimes, clubs advertise poker nights, but they don’t know whether they’ll have 20 people or 50 people show up, Cherry said.

“If they’re short on people to deal, it allows patrons to deal,” he said. Charity poker games would still require separate, volunteer dealers for the final round of the night, but they wouldn’t have to be present the entire time, he said.

Cherry’s bill passed the House and will be taken up by the Senate Public Policy Committee on Monday, Alting said.


  • paid charity gambling
    A LOT of nonprofits were breaking the law--all in the name of doing good deeds to fund their programs--by paying (off) workers who were legally supposed to be VOLUNTEERS for the nonprofit, not some contractor who came in and scammed the games (usually BINGO).
    Places like the Boys/Girls Club (LeGore) were closing down the center in the evening to play bingo in the smoke-filled youth center so they could generate enough money to pay the utility bills for ALL the B/G Clubs in town.
    They "allowed" the players to "tip" the callers and helpers who made good money at the games. They even added Midnight Games which became a huge problem for the surrounding residential community disturbing the peace.
    This is a slippery slope for many reason, but mostly because a seemingly-harmless thing can easily become corrupt and the profit becomes more important than the charity work and criminal elements are always looking for easy ways to cash in. Duping a nonprofit is way too easy and some are willing to look the other way, too.
  • Charity Poker
    Just let the players deal, then after all of the cheating allegations surface it will be a no brainer to let a dealer make $10 an hour..... I wonder if these politicians making decisions on others entertainment choices and enjoyments have the slightest idea that poker is a skill game.
  • casino's
    It goes back to casino's they are the ones who need the money not you charities. The money must go to vegas not your community. as for it being too contriversial - no the check just cleared from vegas.
  • What are they thinking
    So this bill is "too controversial" to tackle this term, but teaching religion in schools is fair game... wow

Post a comment to this story

We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. I never thought I'd see the day when a Republican Mayor would lead the charge in attempting to raise every tax we have to pay. Now it's income taxes and property taxes that Ballard wants to increase. And to pay for a pre-K program? Many studies have shown that pre-K offer no long-term educational benefits whatsoever. And Ballard is pitching it as a way of fighting crime? Who is he kidding? It's about government provided day care. It's a shame that we elected a Republican who has turned out to be a huge big spending, big taxing, big borrowing liberal Democrat.

  2. Why do we blame the unions? They did not create the 11 different school districts that are the root of the problem.

  3. I was just watching an AOW race from cleveland in 1997...in addition to the 65K for the race, there were more people in boats watching that race from the lake than were IndyCar fans watching the 2014 IndyCar season finale in the Fontana grandstands. Just sayin...That's some resurgence modern IndyCar has going. Almost profitable, nobody in the grandstands and TV ratings dropping 61% at some tracks in the series. Business model..."CRAZY" as said by a NASCAR track general manager. Yup, this thing is purring like a cat! Sponsors...send them your cash, pronto!!! LOL, not a chance.

  4. I'm sure Indiana is paradise for the wealthy and affluent, but what about the rest of us? Over the last 40 years, conservatives and the business elite have run this country (and state)into the ground. The pendulum will swing back as more moderate voters get tired of Reaganomics and regressive social policies. Add to that the wave of minority voters coming up in the next 10 to 15 years and things will get better. unfortunately we have to suffer through 10 more years of gerrymandered districts and dispropionate representation.

  5. Funny thing....rich people telling poor people how bad the other rich people are wanting to cut benefits/school etc and that they should vote for those rich people that just did it. Just saying..............