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Washington Times-Reporter - Washington, IL
  • Video Gaming ordinance up for first reading

  • An amendment to the city’s gambling ordinance was sent to the Washington City Council on Monday for a first reading.
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  • An amendment to the city’s gambling ordinance was sent to the Washington City Council on Monday for a first reading.
    The council and city staff have been reviewing the city’s gambling ordinance after an unforeseen interest in video gaming machines.
    The state approved the use of video gaming machines in 2009 and in November 2012 games started popping up in taverns and restaurants with a liquor license.
    City Administrator Tim Gleason previously said the two main changes to the gaming ordinance are the change in opening from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. and limiting gaming license to Class A and E holders.
    Class A licenses are for taverns and restaurants that serve all types of alcohol for consumption on the premises. Class E licenses are similar to A’s but are for clubs and fraternal organizations.
    The start for liquor sales for those license holders would move from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Mondays through Saturdays. The start of liquor sales on Sundays would remain at noon.
    The changes in sale hours for alcohol will be included in an amendment to the city’s liquor code.
    A final vote on the ordinance changes could come at the council’s Feb. 18 meeting.
    The review was prompted when the city received seven applications for liquor licenses and the business plans included adding video gaming machines. Businesses seeking a video gaming license must also have a liquor license.
    Previously, city officials said they did not anticipate the interest in adding the video gaming machines. Because of the pending licenses, the council did not want to have a time consuming review.
    I
    n addition to reviewing the city’s gambling ordinance the council reviewed its budget for the fiscal year 2013-14. The review was part of a process that will continue for several more weeks. The council is expected to have a budget in place by the start of the fiscal year on May 1.
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