House Gaming Oversight Committee Examines Grove Quarter Auction Proposal
5/5/2011

The House Gaming Oversight Committee today examined several proposals that would amend Pennsylvania’s Small Games of Chance Act, including Rep. Seth Grove’s (R-York) proposal to legalize quarter auctions in Pennsylvania. 

“Pennsylvania’s non-profit organizations do a lot of good for our communities so anything we can do to assist them in their fundraising efforts would be a win for everyone,” said Grove.  “This bill is about legalizing a popular and profitable method of raising money for groups like volunteer fire companies, veterans’ organizations, churches and other civic groups.  Quarter auctions are very similar to raffles, and I see no purpose in maintaining their status as a non-sanctioned game.” 

House Bill 1323 would add “coin auctions” to the definition of “games of chance.”  Currently the only games allowed under the Local Option Small Games of Chance Act are punchboards, daily drawings, weekly drawings, raffles and pull-tabs. 

The issue of quarter auctions was brought to Grove’s attention when several local district attorneys were put in the position of either prosecuting community groups for hosting these types of fundraisers or turning a blind eye to an unlawful game of chance.  House Bill 1323 would help non-profit organizations raise funds and would allow prosecutors to focus on more pressing matters. 

During the hearing, the committee also heard testimony about proposals to increase the prize limits non-profit groups could offer for small games of chance, such as Rep. Sheryl Delozier’s (R-Cumberland) House Bill 169 and Rep. Kerry Benninghoff’s (R-Centre/Mifflin) House Bill 1288. 

Finally, the committee examined Rep. Ron Miller’s (R-York) House Bill 906, which would allow for-profit entities, such as restaurants, taverns and hotels, to sponsor small games of chance.  The measure would require some of the profits from these games to be distributed to local non-profits organizations, and a portion of the revenue generated would benefit the state’s General Fund. 

All legislation studied by the committee is still awaiting an up-or-down vote by the committee before it can proceed to the House floor for consideration by the entire chamber. 

More information about Grove and his legislative priorities is available at RepGrove.com and Facebook.com/RepSethGrove

State Representative Seth Grove
196th District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Contact:  Nicole Wamsley
nwamsley@pahousegop.com     
717.783.8063
Twitter.com/RepGrove

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