WSR 07-10-034

PERMANENT RULES

GAMBLING COMMISSION


[ Order 611 -- Filed April 24, 2007, 12:30 p.m. , effective January 1, 2008 ]


Effective Date of Rule: January 1, 2008.

Purpose: The gambling commission is rewriting its rules manual using plain English techniques. We anticipate the project will be completed by January 1, 2008. The rules manual is being broken into sections and rewritten a section at a time. At their October 2006, commission meeting, the commission voted to file a new chapter 230-15 WAC to codify rules relating to card rooms that had been rewritten in plain English, which was filed under WSR 06-24-057. At the February 2007, commission meeting, changes were made to eight of the rules in chapter 230-15 WAC. As such, these eight rules were held over for further discussion and a new filing, WSR 07-05-034, provided notice that changes were made to these rules.


Overview of changes


These post-January 1, 2008, card game rules were changed as they underwent review during the rules simplification project. We had several goals during rules simplification: To clarify the language in each rule, to reduce the number of words in each rule, to add any rule interpretations that addressed ambiguities in the rules, and to align the rules with current enforcement and compliance. During the public discussion of the filed rules, some amendments were necessary to correct misunderstandings, mistakes, and unclear language we had written into the rules. Because these changes were considered substantive, we chose to pull this group of rules and send it on a new filing track to give the public proper notice of the changes we had made to what was originally filed.

WAC 230-15-065 Enforcement of card game rules of play. The rule was amended to make house rules have priority over rules from one of the card game rule books we approve.

WAC 230-15-126 Cutting cards in center dealer-dealt games. This rule was added to complete instructions about cutting cards for all types of card games.

WAC 230-15-150 Selling and redeeming chips. This rule was amended to allow licensees more time to ensure that checks are deposited.

WAC 230-15-275 Surveillance requirements for Class F card games. This rule added camera coverage which included the table number. This had not been required of Class F licensees before.

WAC 230-15-285 Camera and monitor requirements for closed circuit television systems. This rule was amended to add additional requirements for nonhouse-banked card games which had accidentally been removed.

WAC 230-15-320 Surveillance room requirements for house-banked card game licensees. This rule was amended to allow authorized personnel to escort any other person into the surveillance room for educational, investigative, or maintenance purposes.

WAC 230-15-400 Accounting for player-supported jackpot funds. This rule was amended to allow licensees more time to ensure that checks are deposited.

WAC 230-15-430 Internal control requirements. This rule was amended to change the department responsible for the destruction of damaged chips.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 9.46.070.

Adopted under notice filed as WSR 07-05-034 on February 14, 2007, and published March 7, 2007.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Comply with Federal Statute: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Federal Rules or Standards: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Recently Enacted State Statutes: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted at Request of a Nongovernmental Entity: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted on the Agency's Own Initiative: New 8, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted in Order to Clarify, Streamline, or Reform Agency Procedures: New 8, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Number of Sections Adopted Using Negotiated Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; Pilot Rule Making: New 0, Amended 0, Repealed 0; or Other Alternative Rule Making: New 8, Amended 0, Repealed 0.

Date Adopted: April 24, 2007.

Susan Arland

Rules Coordinator

OTS-9588.3


NEW SECTION
WAC 230-15-065   Enforcement of card game rules of play.   Card game licensees must conduct card games according to the approved rules of play. We enforce rules of play in the following order:

(1) First priority: Rules explained in TITLE 230 WAC; and

(2) Second priority: Rules explained by a licensed manufacturer of a patented game that we have approved; and

(3) Third priority: House rules card game licensees have developed and we have approved; and

(4) Fourth priority: Rules explained in the most current version of The New Complete Hoyle, Revised or Hoyle's Modern Encyclopedia of Card Games, or a similar authoritative book on card games which we have approved.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 230-15-126   Cutting cards in center dealer-dealt games.   In center dealer-dealt games:

(1) After the shuffle, the dealer must offer the cards to a player for a cut. After this initial offer of a cut, the dealer may require any player who asks for a cut to pay a maximum of one dollar; and

(2) Dealers must:

(a) Not cut the cards more than twice during each hand or game; and

(b) Place all the fees for cutting the cards into the pot for that hand or game.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 230-15-150   Selling and redeeming chips.   (1) Card game licensees must:

(a) Sell chips and redeem chips at the same value; and

(b) Sell chips for cash at gambling tables; and

(c) Keep all funds from selling chips separate and apart from all other money received; and

(d) Not extend credit to a person purchasing chips, including to card room employees playing cards; and

(2) Licensees may accept checks, if the checks meet the requirements of WAC 230-06-005. They must:

(a) Deposit any check retained after the close of business no later than the second banking day after the close of business. Checks deposited to an armored car service no later than the second banking day after the close of business meet this requirement; and

(b) Count each transaction for the purchase of chips as a separate transaction. (Example: They must not allow a player's check to be altered after it is exchanged for chips.)

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NEW SECTION
WAC 230-15-275   Surveillance requirements for Class F card games.   (1) Class F licensees must use a closed circuit television system (CCTV) to record critical activities when:

(a) Operating player-supported jackpots; or

(b) Assessing fees on amounts wagered (rake method).

(2) Class F licensees must have a CCTV that views:

(a) All gambling at each table including, at least, the:

(i) Cards; and

(ii) Wagers; and

(iii) Chip tray; and

(iv) Drop box openings; and

(v) Table number; and

(vi) Players; and

(vii) Dealers; and

(b) When the count is being conducted, at least, the:

(i) Count table; and

(ii) Floor; and

(iii) Drop boxes; and

(iv) Drop box storage shelves/cabinets.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 230-15-285   Camera and monitor requirements for closed circuit television systems.   (1) Class F and house-banked licensees' closed circuit television system must consist of light sensitive cameras capable of permitting the viewer to determine card and chip values. Each video camera must be capable of having the images displayed on a video monitor and recorded.

(2) Class F and house-banked licensees must install, at least:

(a) Cameras in a manner that will prevent them from being obstructed, tampered with, or disabled; and

(b) Pan, tilt, zoom (PTZ) cameras behind a smoked dome, one-way mirror, or similar materials that conceal the camera from view; and

(c) One or more fixed camera focused over each gambling table, covering the entire table layout.

(d) In nonhouse-banked games, an additional fixed camera must focus over the dealer area, covering the chip rack, all drop box openings, and the community card area; and

(e) A sufficient number of fixed cameras and/or PTZ cameras to monitor players and dealers at each gambling table. The PTZ cameras must be:

(i) Permanently programmed; and

(ii) Capable of viewing each patron and dealer at each gambling position at least once every five minutes; and

(f) A sufficient number of fixed cameras and/or PTZ cameras in the count area or count room; and

(g) Fixed cameras and/or PTZ cameras in any other location deemed necessary.

(4) In addition, house-banked card game licensees must:

(a) Install a sufficient number of video monitors in their CCTV system to simultaneously view multiple gambling tables, the cashier's cage, and count room activities;

(b) Install a sufficient number of fixed cameras and/or PTZ cameras in the cage(s); and

(c) Install a sufficient number of PTZ cameras having the ability to determine the card and chip values for winning hands.

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Reviser's note: The typographical error in the above section occurred in the copy filed by the agency and appears in the Register pursuant to the requirements of RCW 34.08.040.
NEW SECTION
WAC 230-15-320   Surveillance room requirements for house-banked card game licensees.   House-banked card game licensees must maintain one or more surveillance rooms. They must:

(1) Control access to the surveillance room so that only surveillance department employees use the room. Owners or their approved supervisory or management personnel may also enter the surveillance room to monitor activities. Licensees may allow authorized personnel to escort any other person into the surveillance room for educational, investigative, or maintenance purposes; and

(2) Ensure that surveillance room entrances are not easily observed from the gambling floor; and

(3) Ensure that a surveillance employee is present in the room and monitoring activities using the equipment any time the card room is conducting gambling and during the count process. However, licensees may operate the surveillance room without staff for routine breaks that are less than thirty minutes per shift; and

(4) Ensure that any time a winning wager, a jackpot, or bonus pay out greater than one thousand dollars is won, they use pan-tilt-zoom (PTZ) cameras to verify:

(a) Winning hands; and

(b) Amounts of the wager; and

(c) Amounts of the pay out; and

(d) Players who won the prize.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 230-15-400   Accounting for player-supported jackpot funds.   Class F or house-banked licensees must:

(1) Maintain a separate bank account in a bank, mutual savings bank, or credit union in Washington state for holding player-supported jackpot (PSJ) funds; and

(2) Deposit only funds from PSJs into the account; and

(3) Not make payouts from the PSJ funds until licensees have first deposited the funds in the PSJ account. However, licensees may pay out prizes won during the gambling day and deduct administrative expenses before licensees deposit the funds; and

(4) Deposit the PSJ funds into the PSJ account or with an armored car service no later than the second banking day after the close of business; and

(5) Identify all deposits of PSJ funds by the type of PSJ fund and date of collection. Licensees must keep the validated deposit receipts as a part of their required daily records; and

(6) Transfer the amount from the PSJ account to the cage or general account before the end of the month if PSJ prizes are paid from the cage or general account. The licensee must keep the transfer information as part of the written records; and

(7) Reconcile the account balance in their bank statement to the PSJ prize balance on their PSJ fund accrual record each month. "Reconcile" means the licensee must compare the two balances, resolve any differences, and document the comparison and the differences in writing. Licensees must keep the reconciliation as part of their records.

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NEW SECTION
WAC 230-15-430   Internal control requirements.  


General accountability requirements.


(1) House-banked card game licensees must have a system of internal controls including, at least:

(a) Accounting controls - Include the licensee's plan, procedures, and records concerned with the safeguarding of assets and the reliability of financial records. Licensees must design these controls to provide reasonable assurance that:

(i) Transactions are executed with management's general and specific authorization; and

(ii) Transactions are recorded so that financial statements are prepared in conformity with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), and so that accountability for assets is maintained; and

(iii) Access to assets is permitted only with management's authorization; and

(iv) Records are compared with existing assets at least annually and appropriate action is taken within five working days to correct any differences; and

(b) Administrative controls - Include, at least, the licensee's plan, procedures, and records outlining decision-making processes that lead to authorization of transactions. These must provide for:

(i) Competent personnel with an understanding of internal control procedures; and

(ii) Segregation of incompatible functions so that no employee is in a position to commit and conceal errors or wrongdoings in the normal course of his or her duties.


Designating a general manager.

(2) The owner, partners, or board of directors for the licensee must designate an individual with overall responsibility for the business, called the "general manager." The general manager may also perform the duties of a gambling operations department manager; and


Establish separate departments or functions.


(3) Licensees must establish separate departments or functions which must be independent from each other. At a minimum, these must include:

(a) Surveillance;

(b) Security;

(c) Gambling; and

(d) Accounting.


Surveillance department requirements.

(4) The surveillance department manager must ensure that surveillance employees follow all requirements of the surveillance WACs, including, at least:

(a) Closely and clandestinely observing the operation of the card games, the cashier's cage, and count room; and

(b) Recording video and audio of the activities in the count room; and

(c) Monitoring for cheating, theft, embezzlement, and other illegal activities on the licensed premises; and

(d) Recording video of unusual or suspected illegal activities; and

(e) Notifying appropriate supervisors and us, within three working days, when they detect cheating, theft, embezzlement, or other illegal activities related to gambling; and

(f) Giving our agents or law enforcement personnel immediate access to the surveillance room; and

(g) Ensuring that each dealer is evaluated to determine if he or she follows all required dealer procedures set out in the house-banked card game licensee's approved internal controls; and

(h) Documenting procedures about how winning wagers, jackpots, or bonus pay outs will be verified; and

(i) Ensuring that all surveillance employees have demonstrated a knowledge of:

(i) Operating surveillance systems; and

(ii) Rules of play and procedures for the games being played; and

(iii) Overall procedures relating to the duties of all employees of the house-banked card room, including dealers, shift managers, floor supervisors, cage cashiers and count team members.


Security department requirements.


(5) The security department manager must ensure that security employees control:

(a) Transfer of cash and chips to and from the gambling tables, cage, and count room; and

(b) Dealing shoes and new and used cards, when not in use or when held in evidence; and

(c) Disposing of or destroying used cards and dealing shoes, and observing accounting department employees when they destroy damaged chips when removed from service.


Gambling operations department requirements.


(6) The gambling operations department manager, or general manager, is responsible for house-banked card games and must ensure that:

(a) Dealers operate card games at assigned gambling tables; and

(b) Cards and dealing shoes are properly accounted for when in use on the gambling floor; and

(c) There is adequate supervision on the business premises.


Accounting department requirements.


(7) The accounting department must be supervised by a person who reports directly to the general manager. The accounting department must, at least:

(a) Implement and monitor accounting controls; and

(b) Control processes in the count room and cashier's cage; and

(c) Supervise the count room personnel and cashier's cage personnel; and

(d) Control the inventory of unused forms; and

(e) Reconcile the used and unused forms; and

(f) Prepare, control, and store records and data we require; and

(g) Oversee, with the help of the security department, the destruction of damaged chips removed from service.

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Washington State Code Reviser's Office