Defeated the Governor’s Sole Source Legislation for Video Poker
In February 2009, Governor Rendell announced his support of legalizing video poker machines in bars and clubs, in an effort to support funding of education. This “legal” issue has long been a goal of PAMMA, as it would legitimize the “clouded history” shared by some of the original member-operators. PAMMA was prepared to push hard for legislation and work with the administration to get it enacted. To the industry’s surprise and disappointment, the Governor suddenly announced he would only support a “sole source vendor” version of the legislation. This was not good for the industry. PAMMA then went head-to-head with the Governor, his administration and staff and defeated the legislation.
Favorable Smoking Legislation
PAMMA led the debate to ensure that many of its members’ locations – both bars and clubs – would be in a position to permit smoking. PAMMA was instrumental in both writing the specific language for the exemption, and getting it included in the legislation. In an effort to seek compliance, PAMMA along with key member distributors, held regional seminars to assist both members and their customers to fill out the applications required by the state to meet the filing deadline in September 2008.
Industry Sales Tax - Defeated!
Two measures that would have extended the 6% sales tax to the gross receipts on all coin-operated amusement devices – one in 2006 and another in 2008 - came close to passing the legislature! In 2006 one bill passed in the House by just 1 vote, but PAMMA was able to defeat it in the Senate. When another attempt was made in 2008, PAMMA was able to defeat it in the house by 40 votes.
Tournament Regulations Involving Cash Awards
For years, many customers of PAMMA members were conducting pool tournaments that gave cash awards and prizes. The PA State police began enforcement against these customer locations because LCB regulations did not specifically allow cash awards to be given from licensed establishments. PAMMA worked with the LCB to change the regulations so it is now legal for Dart, Trivia, Pool and other tournaments to be held in licensed establishments and to give cash awards to winners. Both members and their customers reaped the rewards of these updated regulations.
Parental Advisory Rating System
In keeping with its mission to advocate responsible business, PAMMA worked diligently to assure compliance with the National Video Game Rating System. To that end, the association worked and complied with the federal government to identify the content of coin-operated video game product utilizing a color coded rating system. This system is designed to better inform families of the contents of the products we operate when visiting the locations we service. Advocating for members locations is key to PAMMA’s mission.