WSR 12-17-092



[ Filed August 16, 2012, 9:42 a.m. ]

Original Notice.

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 12-13-099.

Title of Rule and Other Identifying Information: Amending WAC 230-15-135 Wagering limits for nonhouse-banked card games; and repealing WAC 230-15-189 House-banked and Class F card game licensee pilot program on wagering limits for Texas Hold'em poker.

Hearing Location(s): Clarion, 1507 North First Street, Yakima, WA 98901, on October 11 or 12, 2012, at 9:00 a.m. or 1:00 p.m.

NOTE: Meeting dates and times are tentative. Visit our web site at and select public meeting about ten days before the meeting to confirm meeting date/location/start time.

Date of Intended Adoption: October 11 or 12, 2012.

Submit Written Comments to: Susan Arland, P.O. Box 42400, Olympia, WA 98504-2400, e-mail, fax (360) 486-3625, by October 1, 2012.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Gail Grate, executive assistant, by October 1, 2012, TTY (360) 486-3637 or (360) 486-3453.

Purpose of the Proposal and Its Anticipated Effects, Including Any Changes in Existing Rules: We have received a petition for rule change from the Recreational Gaming Association requesting that Texas Hold'em wager limits be permanently increased from $40 to $100. And, for housekeeping purposes, a repealer of WAC 230-15-189, as the Texas Hold'em wager increase pilot program expires December 31, 2012.

This proposal comes after an eighteen month pilot program which increased wager limits from $40 to $100 for Texas Hold'em poker. The pilot program began October 2010 and ended May 2012; however, the higher limits are in place until December 31, 2012, or until the commission takes action. The pilot program was recommended by the "Texas Hold'em Workgroup." This workgroup was created in 2009 by the gambling commissioners after receiving three petitions from the public, in five years, to increase poker wager limits. The workgroup included staff and stakeholders. Commissioner Ellis chaired the workgroup. The group discussed various aspects of Texas Hold'em poker and the possible impacts, effects, and desired results of any potential wager increase.

Reasons Supporting Proposal: See above.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 9.46.070, 9.46.0282.

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Name of Proponent: Dolores Chiechi, representing the Recreational Gaming Association, private.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting: Susan Arland, Rules Coordinator, Lacey, (360) 486-3466; Implementation: Rick Day, Director, Lacey, (360) 486-3446; and Enforcement: Mark Harris, Assistant Director, Lacey, (360) 486-3579.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. A small business economic impact statement was not prepared because the rule change would not impose additional costs on any licensees because licensees are not required to offer higher wager limits.

A cost-benefit analysis is not required under RCW 34.05.328. The Washington state gambling commission is not an agency that is statutorily required to prepare a cost-benefit analysis under RCW 34.05.328.

August 16, 2012

Susan Arland

Rules Coordinator


AMENDATORY SECTION(Amending Order 658, filed 10/9/09, effective 11/9/09)

WAC 230-15-135   Wagering limits for nonhouse-banked card games.   Card room licensees must not exceed these wagering limits:

(1) Poker -

(a) There must be no more than five betting rounds in any one game; and

(b) There must be no more than four wagers in any betting round, for example, the initial wager plus three raises; and

(c) The maximum amount of a single wager must not exceed forty dollars; however, class F and house-banked card game licensees may offer a single wager not to exceed one hundred dollars for the game of Texas Hold'em;

(2) Games based on achieving a specific number of points - Each point must not exceed five cents in value;

(3) Ante - No more than the maximum wager allowed for the first betting round for any game, except for Panguingue (Pan). The ante may, by house rule:

(a) Be made by one or more players, but the total ante may not exceed the maximum wager allowed for the first betting round; and

(b) Be used as part of a player's wager;

(4) Panguingue (Pan) - The maximum value of a chip must not exceed ten dollars. An ante must not exceed one chip. We prohibit doubling of conditions. Players going out may collect no more than two additional chips for going out from each participating player.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 9.46.070, 9.46.0282. 09-21-013 (Order 658), 230-15-135, filed 10/9/09, effective 11/9/09. Statutory Authority: RCW 9.46.070. 09-09-056 (Order 642), 230-15-135, filed 4/10/09, effective 7/1/09; 07-21-116 (Order 617), 230-15-135, filed 10/22/07, effective 1/1/08; 07-09-033 (Order 608), 230-15-135, filed 4/10/07, effective 1/1/08.]



     The following section of the Washington Administrative Code is repealed:
WAC 230-15-189 House-banked and Class F card game licensee pilot program on wagering limits for Texas Hold'em poker.