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Issue Date: Vol. 52, No. 12, December 2012, Posted On: 11/16/2012

NC Sweepstakes Video Sector Expands; FL County's Ban Survives

Marcus Webb
TAGS: sweepstakes video game, sweepstakes operator, North Carolina Supreme Court, Fayetteville Observer, electronic sweepstakes legality, Hillsborough County sweepstakes cafes, sweepstakes ban, video poker machine, Little Vegas City

FAYETTEVILLE, NC -- While operators and public officials wait for a state Supreme Court ruling on the legality of sweepstakes videogames, a "second wave" of sweeps game locations is springing up across North Carolina, according to the Fayetteville Observer.

In a development reminiscent of the marketing of video pokers more than a decade ago, operators in North Carolina are running sweepstakes locations under such flashy and provocative names as Little Vegas City.

The Observer said this second wave resulted in operators paying the local city government more than $1 million in licensing fees for the first 10 months of 2012. Fees are $2,000 a location and $2,500 per machine.

The expansion was triggered by a March, 2012, ruling by the Court of Appeals that a statewide ban on the devices was unconstitutional. As earlier reported by Vending Times, that ruling is now under review by the state Supreme Court. | SEE STORY

In Florida, four operators have dropped their challenge to a local ban on electronic sweepstakes cafés in Hillsborough County. Local press sources said the operators gave up after county commissioners amended the original ordinance in October to ban "simulated gambling devices," making their operation a civil rather than criminal offense. | SEE STORY

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