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Issue Date: Vol. 51, No. 7, July 2011, Posted On: 7/4/2011

WV Operator Sues Lottery Commission

Marcus Webb
Wheeling Coin LLC, West Virginia, Lottery, video lottery, video lottery machine, video lottery license, video lottery operator

CHARLESTON, WV -- A video lottery operator has filed suit against the West Virginia Lottery Commission requesting that the judge issue a preliminary injunction that would allow the operator to keep VLTs active in 44 locations while it seeks to secure the relevant licenses. Wheeling Coin LLC filed its lawsuit in Kanawha County Circuit Court.

Lottery officials said Wheeling Coin lost its licenses in the disputed locations because it failed to file proper paperwork.

West Virginia began its video lottery program in 2001 with 10-year licenses that awarded operators rights to run VLTs in authorized locations. This year, for the first time, the state's Lottery Commission ran a sweeping license renewals program based on a bidding system.

Some 7,500 VLT licenses were awarded, which will deliberately reduce the size of the VLT market. The result will put more pressure on operators to hold onto existing licenses, which has triggered some expensive bidding.

As recently reported by VT, the state has generated almost $70 million from three rounds of bidding on the licenses. | SEE STORY

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