New Law To Rectify Gambling | Print |  E-mail
Monday, 05 November 2012 10:27


By Robert Souza
CASTRO VALLEY FORUM



Alameda County officials are devising a new law to regulate local storefront online gaming operations – called “Sweepstake Centers” or “Internet Cafes” – where points earned in computer gambling can be turned into cash.

 

Four such game centers are currently operating in Castro Valley, Cherryland and San Lorenzo.

 

“This new regulation will be tough because we want to monitor these businesses stringently,” said Supervisor Nate Miley during last week’s Unincorporated Services Committee meeting in San Lorenzo. “These businesses have found a loophole in the law and we want to close that loophole as soon as possible to regulate them.”

 

In August, the operations were deemed illegal  under present county codes, however, the Alameda County Board of Supervisors allowed them to remain in business for 45 days after the sweepstakes’ business owners appealed a decision by the Board of Zoning Adjustments. 

 

San Lorenzo resident Kathie Ready criticized supervisors for the moratorium. “There is absolutely illegal gaming going on at each of the establishments.”

 

Sheriffs Sgt. Bret Scheuller told the meeting the gaming centers operate in a grey area of the law claiming what they do is no different than  contest games at fast-food chains.

 

The new ordinance will be discussed at the Castro Valley Municipal Advisory Council meeting on Nov. 20 and the County Planning Commission on Dec. 5. The Supervisors could take action on the measure early next year.



 

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