Allied Charities of Minnesota

News

  • 07 Jan 2021 09:09 | Allen Lund (Administrator)

    January 6, 2021

    Resuming the Conduct of Lawful Gambling at Sites Now Open for Indoor On-site Eating and Drinking

     

    In accordance with Executive Order 21-01, effective Monday, January 11 at 12:00 AM, the following restrictions affect lawful gambling above and beyond those restrictions in existing statute, executive order, and rule:

     

    1. Business Hours – Lawful gambling may be conducted until 10:00 p.m. each day;
    2. Capacity – In places of public accommodation (including bars, restaurants, and bingo halls), capacity is limited to 50% of the location’s normal capacity limits;
    3. These lawful gambling activities must be conducted in compliance with all applicable statutes, executive orders and rules, as well as Minnesota Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance.

     

    Restart Checklist

    Gambling managers are encouraged to use the Gambling Control Board’s “Checklist for Lawful Gambling Restart” as a to-do list for restarting lawful gambling activity at their sites.

     

    Paused Games

    In conformance with Executive Order 21-01 organizations, on January 11, 2021 organizations may resume play of games that were “paused” when Executive Order 20-99 went into effect on November 20, 2020.

     

    Restarting Paused Paper Pull-tab Games

    To resume play of a paused paper pull-tab game:

    1. Paused games may only be placed back into play at the site where they were originally in play.
    2. Audit the game (count the unsold and winning tickets).  The results of your audit should be identical to the game audit that was conducted when the game was paused.  If the amounts of your current game audit vary from the amounts of the November audit, close the game and report the results on your January monthly reports.
    3. Withdraw the game’s starting cash bank amount from your gambling bank account and place it in the game’s cash drawer at your site.
    4. When the game’s cash proceeds and starting cash bank were deposited into the gambling account in November, the amount taken for deposit should have been recorded in the “Funds added/removed” column of the game’s LG861 tracking form.  The “$ Cash out” column should then have been recorded as “$0”.  When placing money back into the game’s cash drawer, enter the amount added in the “Funds added/removed” and the “$ Cash out” columns.

     

    Restarting Paused Electronic Pull-tab Games

    1. Coordinate with the electronic-game distributor to resume play of paused electronic pull-tab games.
    2. In November, the amount taken for deposit should have been recorded on the LG861e in Column G (“Amount removed from cash drawer for deposit”). Double-check the LG861e form for November 2020 to ensure that it was completed correctly.
    3. Start a new LG861e form for January 2021.  Once the electronic game starting cash back has been placed into the cash drawer, enter that amount in Column B (“Amount in cash drawer at start of business day”).


  • 06 Jan 2021 14:53 | Allen Lund (Administrator)

    Today Governor Walz announced a loosening of restrictions. Bars and restaurants will be able to open for indoor dining on 01/11/2021 at 50% capacity. Dine-in service must end by 10 pm (10 pm curfew). 150 persons maximum. Maximum of six people per table, six feet apart. Bar seating will be allowed for two people, with six feet spacing between groups. Masked required to be in use when not eating or drinking. Reservations are required. 

  • 06 Jan 2021 10:38 | Allen Lund (Administrator)

    Press Release

    Pollard Banknote Announces The Acquisition Of Compliant Gaming

    WINNIPEG, Manitoba, December 30, 2020 /CNW/ – Pollard Banknote Limited (TSX: PBL) (“Pollard Banknote” or the “Company”) announced today that it has signed a definitive agreement, and closed the transaction, to purchase (“Acquisition”) 100% of the equity of Compliant Gaming LLC (“Compliant”), a leading provider of electronic pull‐tab gaming systems and products to the charitable gaming market.

    Compliant was founded in 2014 and offers a broad range of game content and system support in the growing area of electronic gaming and are currently the second largest supplier in the fast‐growing Minnesota market. Key to their success has been a robust technology platform and engaging game content.

    Electronic pull‐tabs were first introduced in Minnesota in 2012 to assist charitable organizations in fundraising and to help the state in funding the development of the US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis. Experienced in bars and restaurants, electronic pull‐tabs in Minnesota provide a gaming experience played on portable tablets, which are provided by the establishment to its customers. Since its start 8 years ago, this market for electronic pull‐tabs has grown exponentially, starting from zero in 2012 to generating almost $100 million USD in net gaming receipts (revenue less prize payouts) in the fiscal year ended June 30, 2020. It has been the fastest growing segment of the Minnesota charitable gaming market for the past 5 years.

    The acquisition of this technology for the charitable gaming market provides a new solution offering for our portfolio as Compliant’s portable, tablet‐based product is a strong complement to our Diamond Game kiosk‐based technology. Compliant brings a successful operation in the Minnesota market while positioning us strategically for new jurisdictions looking to enter the electronic side of the charitable gaming market, whether it be by tablet or kiosk.

    “We are very excited to be bringing the Compliant technology and market presence into our charitable gaming business and believe this will provide us with a valuable new product to help maintain Pollard’s leading presence in this market,” stated John Pollard, Co‐Chief Executive Officer of Pollard Banknote. “The impressive success the Compliant team has achieved in such a short period of time in Minnesota reflects the customer focus that is consistent with our own strategic approach, and we believe there is considerable opportunity for additional growth in this state. In addition, more and more jurisdictions are looking at alternative products and solutions to provide fundraising opportunities for local charities and we feel Compliant’s solutions provide an attractive alternative for good causes in new markets.”

    Frederick Reis, Founder of Compliant, stated “Compliant’s unique electronic pull‐tab and integrated bingo system is complementary to Pollard’s leadership position in the charitable gaming market, and Compliant’s expertise will enhance Pollard’s broad offering of charitable gaming products to customers throughout North America. We look forward to joining the Pollard team and to continuing to deliver our signature personal commitment to our customers and industry leading solutions for electronic gaming.”

    The total Acquisition purchase price is $19.0 million U.S. dollars (approximately $24.3 million CDN dollars using an exchange rate of $1.28 CDN dollar per U.S. dollar), prior to standard working capital adjustments and potential future earn‐out payments based on certain EBITDA targets. The purchase price was funded from existing Pollard Banknote cash resources and availability under our existing senior credit facilities. The Acquisition is expected to be accretive to Pollard Banknote’s net income prior to amortization of related purchase price accounting adjustments. The acquisition of Compliant has closed and is not contingent on any approvals or financing.

    The Compliant business will join our existing complement of charitable gaming focused businesses, including our Diamond Game eGaming business unit and our combined American Games and International Gamco paper‐based operations, in providing an extensive portfolio of products and solutions to charities across North America.

    John Pollard concludes, “In addition to retail excellence and outstanding games, digital innovation is a cornerstone of Pollard’s strategic objectives and the acquisition of Compliant further expands our digital expertise. Pollard Banknote is committed to expanding our leadership role in the charitable gaming market and focusing on technology‐based solutions that meet our strategic objectives as well as generating a strong financial return. We are honoured the Compliant team has joined us and we look forward to continuing their strong record of growth.”

    About Pollard Banknote

    Pollard Banknote is a leading lottery partner to more than 60 lotteries worldwide, providing high quality instant ticket products, licensed games, Schafer Systems and Fastrak retail merchandising solutions, and a full suite of digital offerings, ranging from world-class mkodo game apps to comprehensive player engagement and iLottery solutions, including strategic marketing and management services. The company is a proven innovator and has decades of experience helping lotteries to maximize player engagement, sales, and proceeds for good causes. Pollard Banknote also provides pull-tab tickets, bingo paper, and its Diamond Game and Oasis-branded electronic ticket machines to charitable and other gaming markets in North America. Established in 1907, Pollard Banknote is owned approximately 67.5% by the Pollard family and 32.5% by public shareholders, and is publicly traded on the TSX (PBL). For more information, please visit our website at www.pollardbanknote.com.

    Forward-looking Statements

    Certain statements in this press release may constitute “forward-looking” statements and information, which involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties, and other factors that may cause actual results, performance, or achievements to be materially different from any future results, performance, or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. When used in this document, such statements include such words as “may,” “will,” “expect,” “believe,” “plan,” and other similar terminology. These statements reflect management’s current expectations regarding future events and operating performance and speak only as of the date of this document. There should not be an expectation that such information will in all circumstances be updated, supplemented, or revised whether as a result of new information, changing circumstances, future events, or otherwise. -30-


  • 05 Jan 2021 07:47 | Allen Lund (Administrator)

    Members,

    It is being reported that Governor Walz will announce loosening of restrictions on indoor dining tomorrow, Wed. January 6, at a 2 pm news conference. No other details are currently available.

    The GCB issued their FY20 annual report in November of 2020. In December they issued the individual organization numbers that can be seen under the Reports and Legislation tab on their website. That is the report that I use to do a deeper dive into the numbers. 

    Using the numbers in the report of all organizations, I found the following:

    Payout across all organizations averaged 84.9%. Highest was 90.5%. 359 organizations (31.8% of us) were 85% or higher.

    As a group we got 3 cents to the bottom line for missions for every dollar wagered, which is a decrease of over 16% from FY19. In the past two fiscal years we have lost 22% of our ability to serve on a per dollar wagered basis.

    The average cost of doing business was 12.1 cents on every dollar sold. 

    We had 34 orgs (3% of us) that lost money on every sale. I'm sure that there were some extenuating circumstances, but that is still hard to wrap your arms around.

    We had 66 organizations (5.8% of us) make less than 1 cent per dollar wagered.

    We had 168 organizations (15% of us) make less than 2 cents per dollar wagered.

    We had 367 organizations (32% of us) make less than 3 cents per dollar wagered.

    We had 344 organizations (30% of us) pay more in taxes/fees than they had for their missions.

    We cannot afford to keep losing ground in our ability to serve those in need. Those in need are our constituents, they are who we need to fight to protect. We need to be their voice.

    Over the past several years ACM has offered several options that we believed would have helped increase our ability to serve those in need.

    Tax relief has been at the top of that list and ACM members have supported that goal. Despite the best efforts of those legislators that support us, the legislature as a whole has not seen fit to change our tax structure. In the 2021 legislative session we will again be working to affect change in the current tax code, but given the economic circumstances that we as a state currently face, this is a tall climb.

    ACM has previously offered up the ideas of capping the 15% and 20% bar options (as the 10% booth option is), capping the electronic tab revenue share (as linked electronic bingo revenue share is) and lowering the payout maximum. All of these options were deemed by members and our for profit industry associates as being too controversial and divisive. None were moved forward for legislative consideration.

    ACM has been hearing from numerous member organizations that would like to offer multiple electronic systems in their sites, but have been told by the bar/distributor/manufacturer that it is not an option. 

    Until a few years ago, manufacturers were required by statute to sell all of their products to all distributors in the state.  This “sell to all” law was designed to foster competition.  The only exception was for certain games (usually paper pull tab games) sold on an exclusive basis to a single distributor.  But after electronic bingo and pull tabs were permitted, the statute was changed to create another exception for electronic systems and software.   This change gave an electronic manufacturer the ability to choose who they will and will not sell to. It allows a manufacturer to sell to only one distributor. It also allows a manufacturer to refuse to sell to a distributor, including if a distributor attempts to sell a competing electronic product.  The argument for exempting electronic systems and software from the “sell to all” law was that proprietary information might be passed from distributors to competing manufacturers. Today, each of the electronic manufacturers licensed in Minnesota sells to multiple distributors, making the exemption no longer relevant.  In the past eight and a half years that electronics have been available, I am not aware of any case where proprietary information was stolen or misused by a distributor or licensed organization. 

    We have always said that the consumer will be the ultimate decision maker of who wins or loses in the charitable gambling market. That means that multiple providers need to have unhindered access to the market. Today that is not happening. 

    ACM will be offering legislation that will eliminate the exception in the “sell to all” statute for electronic equipment and software.  If passed, the law will require electronic manufacturers to sell to every licensed distributor (and therefore organization) regardless of whether or not a competing system exists in a site. The decision of what games to offer is best left to the charity and must not be given to anyone else. As soon as we have the language and bill numbers we will pass those along. We will need your support to make the change.

    If you have other ideas on what we could do to reverse our current downward trend, please share them with us.

    FYI, New MN Minimum Wage, Jan 1 The following are Minnesota's new minimum-wage rates as of Jan. 1, 2021. ·  Large employers must pay at least $10.08 an hour when the employer's annual gross revenues are $500,000 or more.·  Small employers must pay at least $8.21 an hour when the employer's annual gross revenues are less than $500,000.·  The training wage rate, $8.21 an hour, may be paid to employees younger than 20 years of age for the first 90 consecutive days of employment.·  The youth wage rate, $8.21 an hour, may be paid to employees younger than 18 years of age. Employers can print or order a free copy of the required minimum wage poster by visiting the   Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry's website .

    Regards,

    Al Lund


  • 31 Dec 2020 08:07 | Allen Lund (Administrator)

    Please see attached.

    Licensee letter F.pdf

  • 22 Dec 2020 08:22 | Allen Lund (Administrator)

    From 'Play ball' to 'Play Bally's'? Sinclair betting on legal gambling to boost viewership

    Sinclair Broadcasting, the owner of Fox Sports North, might soon be able to offer ways to bet on the game you're watching through your TV, phone or pad.  

    By Phil Miller Star Tribune

     

    DECEMBER 22, 2020 — 5:11AM

    WAYNE PARRY, ASSOCIATED PRESS

    This 2019 photo shows a gambler making a sports bet at Bally’s casino in Atlantic City N.J. Fox Sports North, which has televised Twins games on cable under a variety of names almost continuously since 1989, will be rebranded as Bally’s Sports Network (or something similar) this spring,

    MORE

    Sometime next summer, the bullpen door will swing open, Taylor Rogers will jog to the mound, and Twins fans will fret as their closer tries to preserve a small lead.

    But the team's new broadcasting partner wants them to do more than just watch and worry.

    Imagine longtime play-by-play voice Dick Bremer saying something like: "Rogers has converted seven consecutive save opportunities. Can he make it eight? If you'd like to place a bet on it, just go to your Bally's Sports app and click on 'In-game wagers.'"

    Fox Sports North, which has televised Twins games on cable under a variety of names almost continuously since 1989, will be rebranded as Bally's Sports Network (or something similar) this spring, perhaps as soon as baseball's scheduled Opening Day on April 1. And along with a new look will come a new facet of broadcasts of Twins, Timberwolves, Wild and Minnesota United FC games: gambling.

    Sinclair Broadcasting, which bought FSN and 20 other regional sports networks from Fox's parent company for more than $10 billion in August 2019, last month struck an $86 million deal with Bally's Corp., which owns 10 casinos around the country, to rename the various networks and turn them into conduits not only for live sports viewership but online sports gambling as well.

    Want to bet on whether Byron Buxton hits a home run in the game you're about to watch, who will net the Wild's next goal, or whether the Wolves will score more than 100 points? Sinclair and Bally's want to provide that opportunity — eventually, right through your TV, phone or pad. It's a tantalizing new revenue stream for a TV sports industry being battered by the rapid decline of cable and satellite bundlers as consumers migrate to streaming services.

    Betting on games "creates more engagement, and that's what drives value for teams — engaged fans," Chris Ripley, Sinclair's CEO, said in a conference in November to announce the 10-year contract with Bally's. "It's a win-win for everybody."

    Well, perhaps not for the 2.2% of American adults who are unable to moderate their wagering habits, according to research by the National Council on Problem Gambling. But just about everybody who is a fan of professional sports is a potential viewer, it seems.

    Opening the door

    The former Fox regional networks own the rights to televise games of 14 MLB teams, 16 NBA teams and 12 NHL teams, an inventory — in non-COVID years — of more than 4,600 games per season. Sinclair also owns 20% of the YES Network, which carries New York Yankees and Brooklyn Nets games, and is a partner in the Marquee Network, which televises the Chicago Cubs, though neither property will be rebranded as Bally's.

    Those TV rights are rapidly losing value as a younger generation grows up with eyes on much smaller screens, far more interested in interacting via phones than passively watching a sporting event. Already, Sinclair estimates that its regional networks, robbed of hundreds of hours of live programming by the pandemic, lost a combined $4 billion in value since the purchase from Fox. Drumming up new customers, particularly those not inclined to tune in to a low-wattage midweek regular-season MLB game, is becoming critical for programmers.

    They hope they have found a new way to reach those customers, thanks to an unlikely ally: the Supreme Court. In 2018, a 6-3 majority declared unconstitutional a federal law that mostly prohibited states (except Nevada) from legalizing betting on sports, a ruling that set off a rush to cash in on a gambling boom. Already 25 states have approved gambling on sports, and another 21 — including Minnesota — have considered it.

    The right age

    It's a popular, and lucrative, lure.

    The network's research shows that 63% of viewers aged 25-34, the most coveted demographic for sports advertisers, are interested in betting on sports; 46% already bet on games at least once a month; and people who bet on games are 24% more likely to tune in to watch. The rate is nearly as high among college-age adults, creating what Ripley called a "staggering" number of potential customers.

    Those young viewers grew up playing video games, which provides a template for what Sinclair and Bally's have in mind, a broadcast that not only provides gamblers for Bally's but additional viewers for Sinclair's advertisers and teams.

    "The overall vision, of which this is a keystone, is to 'gamify' sports, to make watching sports like playing a video game," Ripley said. "We think this will dramatically increase the attractiveness [of watching games], especially for a younger generation."

    That means making the games — and the virtual betting windows — available on mobile devices, another important part of the strategy. Bally's paid $100 million to purchase Bet.Works, a company that is creating gambling software for a mobile app that can connect directly to Sinclair's streamed broadcasts.

    Minnesota vice

    It's clear already that there's plenty of money at stake, which is why pro leagues, the NBA in particular, have supported legislation to allow and regulate gambling. More than $800 million was wagered on sports in New Jersey last October alone, the state's regulators reported.

    Bills have been filed in the Minnesota Legislature to legalize sports gambling in each of the past two years, but in the face of opposition from Indian tribes that operate casinos in the state, the proposals died without a vote each time. Iowa, however, was among the first states to legalize sports gambling. FSN's reach extends into northern Iowa, putting sports wagering within a short drive for thousands of Minnesotans. Casinos in Deadwood, S.D., which also receives Twins broadcasts, will begin offering wagering on July 1.

    But Sinclair and Bally's are banking on legalization eventually arriving in most states, Minnesota likely among them, and planning programming accordingly. Ripley envisions pregame shows that examine potential wagers and betting strategies "and just set up that day's game for viewers," he told investors. Bally's will purchase advertising on the broadcasts as well, and graphics about available bets someday could be added to the screen.

    Phil Miller has covered the Twins for the Star Tribune since 2013. Previously, he covered the University of Minnesota football team, and from 2007-09, he covered the Twins for the Pioneer Press.

    phil.miller@startribune.com MillerStrib


  • 17 Dec 2020 15:17 | Allen Lund (Administrator)

    Executive Order Allows Lawful Gambling Outdoors Beginning December 19

    In line with Governor Walz’s Executive Order 20-103, lawful gambling may be conducted outdoors at those permitted premises that provide outdoor service beginning December 19, 2020.  These lawful gambling activities must be conducted in compliance with all applicable statutes, executive orders and rules, as well as Minnesota Department of Health  and Centers for Disease Control guidance.  All statutes/rules governing the conduct of lawful gambling remain in effect and will be enforced.

    Outdoor Sales Conduct

    • ·         You may sell gambling equipment only in those areas where food and alcohol are allowed to be served.
    • ·         Cash and games (including electronic games) must be secured at all times and games must remain in full view of the site’s outdoor staff to ensure the integrity of games.
    • ·         All games must be sold and played outdoors but still on the premises.  Tickets (except raffles and sports tipboard) may not leave the outdoor dining area.
    • ·         House rules must be visible at the point of sale and reflect any changes to the conduct of games at the permitted premises to reflect the outdoor lawful gambling activity.

    Gambling Control Board Provides Regulatory Relief

    Executive Order 20-103 prohibits bars and restaurants from serving food and beverages indoors until January 11, 2021.  In response, the Gambling Control Board authorizes the following: 

    License Renewal Dates Extended

    The expiration date for all Gambling Control Board licenses that were in effect on December 1, 2020 will be extended by two months.  This includes organization licenses, premises permits, gambling manager licenses, distributor/salespersons licenses, manufacturer and linked bingo game provider licenses.  For example, if your organization’s license expiration date is March 31, 2021, your organization’s license expiration date will become May 31, 2021.

    Emergency Expenditures/Business Loans Allowed

    This provision allows a short-term loan from a veterans or fraternal organization’s gambling funds to its general fund to relieve effects of the bar and restaurant shutdown.  This provision expires on the day that the emergency executive authority expires, terminates, or is rescinded.

    Lawful Gambling Equipment Sales on Credit Exemption

    The 30-day limit on credit for the sale of lawful gambling equipment is waived. This provision expires on the day that the emergency executive authority expires, terminates, or is rescinded.

    Length of Off-site Permits Extended to 30 Days

    A licensed organization may conduct lawful gambling on a premises other than the organization’s permitted premises if it applies to the Gambling Control Board for approval (form LG230) and obtains Board authorization. The current permit maximum of three (3) days has been extended to thirty (30) days.  There is no fee for an off-site permit.  Organizations will still be limited to twelve (12) permits per calendar year. This provision expires on the day that the emergency executive authority expires, terminates, or is rescinded.

    All organizations must not restart any lawful gambling activities that are prohibited by Executive Order.  Any failure to comply with these requirements prior to the lifting of the executive orders will lead to the prosecution of all violations via applicable administrative and criminal actions.

    Steve Pedersen | Licensing Supervisor

    Minnesota Gambling Control Board

    1711 West County Road B, Suite 300 South

    Roseville, MN 55113

    www.mn.gov/gcb | 651-539-1910

    Confidentiality/Data Privacy Notice:  This email and any attachment(s) are for the sole use of the specifically emailed recipient and may contain information that is confidential, nonpublic, or private data.  If you are not the intended recipient, any unauthorized review, use, disclosure, copying, or distribution of the information included in this message and any attachments is prohibited.  If you have received this communication in error, please contact the sender by reply email and immediately and permanently delete the message and any attachment(s) without copying or disclosing the original.  Information requested may become public information when received by the board, and will be used to determine your compliance with Minnesota statutes and rules governing lawful gambling


  • 16 Dec 2020 08:39 | Allen Lund (Administrator)

    Members,

    At 1:15 pm today Governor Walz will address the state.

    Media outlets have reported that he will extend the indoor dining portion of the latest shutdown for at least three more weeks.

    The GCB posted the note below on their website on December 14.

    Don’t Jeopardize Your Organization’s Gambling License

    There have been reports that some Minnesota bars and restaurants intend to open for on-site eating and drinking prior to Friday, December 18 in violation of Executive Order 20-99.  If so, your organization may feel pressure to also restart the conduct of gambling at these locations.  Please remember that your organization is responsible for securing all games, including those played and unplayed.

     

    The conduct of gambling at a location in violation of Executive Order 20-99 could result in the suspension or revocation of your organization’s lawful gambling license.  If your organization has multiple premises permits, your ability to conduct gambling, even at sites that did not violate the Executive Order, could be affected.

    There are reports that up to 150 restaurants/bars are going to open in defiance of the executive order if the Governor extends his closure order. I understand the frustration that people are feeling that own their own business and are seeing that business go under before their very eyes. The ability to stand up to government when you believe government is wrong is something that I admire and has been a hallmark of our country since its inception.

    For us and our organizations the situation is different. We don’t own them. We are caretakers. We took over from those that came before us and we will someday hand it off to those coming after us. It is not our place to defy executive orders. The need for the relief that organizations like ours provide is increasing daily. We need to be around to help our communities through these very difficult times.

    I will pass along more details when they become available.

    Regards,

    Al

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