The Michigan Gaming Control Board and Michigan Liquor Control Commission are to conduct a state-wide public education and enforcement initiative in a bid to encourage businesses to remove unregulated machines used for illegal gaming.
As a result of the collaboration, the two state agencies hope better knowledge about illegal gambling, coupled with heightened awareness of its consequences, will curb the activity in the region.
“Illegal gambling can lead to other, more serious crimes that compromise safety in Michigan communities,” commented Henry Williams, MGCB executive director.
“Citizens who use these unregulated machines also have little recourse if they feel cheated. They can’t file a formal dispute with an unregulated operator and ask our agency to review the outcome as they can when participating in licensed, legal gaming.”
The two group’s are to share information with businesses and the general public about what is legal in Michigan, which they hope will counteract misleading information the public and businesses receive about unregulated machines used for illegal gaming.
“Liquor licensees who allow illegal gambling and who fail to remove gambling devices used for illegal gaming from their businesses can face violations from the Michigan Liquor Control Commission,” commented Pat Gagliardi, MLCC chair.
“Illegal gambling is considered a serious violation by the Commission, and the penalties from a violation can include fines, suspension or revocation of a liquor license. Liquor licensees are encouraged to utilise only legal forms of gambling to stay compliant with the Commission’s laws and rules.”
Michigan law broadly prohibits any kind of gambling unless specifically authorised under state law, such as gambling machines operated within licensed casinos.
“Laws that authorise and regulate gaming in the state of Michigan serve to protect consumers who wish to gamble,” added Dana Nessel, attorney general.
“My office stands ready to assist the Michigan Liquor Control Commission and Michigan Gaming Control Board in this important enforcement effort.
“We will not hesitate to hold people accountable if they ignore this opportunity to voluntarily remove illegal gambling machines.“