Town of Fort Edward, NY
Washington County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Town Board of the Town of Fort Edward 8-12-1958. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Games of chance — See Ch. 58.

§ 31-1 Authority; title.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
This chapter shall regulate the conduct of certain games of bingo by certain organizations, pursuant to Article 1, § 9, of the Constitution of the State of New York, and Chapter 854 of the Laws of 1957,[1] and shall be known by the short title "Bingo Ordinance of the Town of Fort Edward."
[1]
Editor's Note: See Article 14-H of the General Municipal Law.

§ 31-2 Definitions.

As used in this chapter, unless the context requires otherwise, the following terms shall have the following meanings:
AUTHORIZED ORGANIZATION
Includes only bona fide religious, charitable or nonprofit organizations of veterans, volunteer firemen and similar nonprofit organizations.
BINGO or GAME
Includes a specific game of chance, commonly known as "bingo" or "lotto," in which prizes are awarded on the basis of designated numbers or symbols on a card conforming to numbers or symbols selected at random.
CONTROL COMMISSION
The State Racing and Wagering Board.
[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
LICENSE
A license issued pursuant to the provisions of this chapter.

§ 31-3 Authorization to conduct games.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
It shall be lawful for any authorized organization, upon obtaining a license therefor as hereinafter provided, to conduct the game of bingo within the territorial limits of the Town of Fort Edward, subject to the provisions of this chapter and the provisions of Article 14-H of the General Municipal Law and the provisions of the State Bingo Control Law.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See § 430 et seq. of the Executive Law.

§ 31-4 Application for license.

A. 
Each applicant shall file with the Town Clerk of the Town of Fort Edward a written application of the form prescribed in the rules and regulations of the Control Commission duly executed and verified.
B. 
In each application there shall be designated an active member or members of the applicant organization under whom the game or games of bingo described in the application are to be held, operated and conducted, and there shall be appended to the application a statement, executed and verified by the applicant and by the member or members so designated, that he, she or they will be responsible for the holding, operation and conduct of such games of bingo in accordance with the terms of the license and the provisions of this chapter, Chapter 854 of the Laws of 1957[1] and the rules and regulations of the Control Commission, if such license is granted.
[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
[1]
Editor's Note: See Article 14-H of the General Municipal Law.
C. 
In the event that any premises upon which any such game of bingo is to be held, operated or conducted or which is to be used for any other purpose in connection with the holding, operation or conduct thereof is to be leased or rented from any person, persons or corporations, the application shall be accompanied by a written statement, signed and verified under oath by such person or persons or on behalf of such corporation, stating his or its address, the amount of rent to be paid for such premises and stating that such lessor, lessors or, if a corporation, all of its officers and each of its stockholders who hold ten percent (10%) or more of its stock issued and outstanding are of good moral character and have not been convicted of a crime.
[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]

§ 31-5 General regulations.

Any game or games licensed hereunder shall be subject to the following restrictions in addition to such other restrictions as may be provided herein or contained in the rules and regulations of the Control Commission:
A. 
No person, firm, association, corporation or organization, other than an authorized organization licensed under the provision of this chapter, shall be permitted to conduct such games or shall lease or otherwise make available for conducting bingo a hall or other premises for any consideration whatever, direct or indirect.
[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
B. 
No bingo games shall be held, operated or conducted on or within any leased premises if rental under such lease is to be paid. wholly or partly, on the basis of a percentage of the receipts or net profits derived from the operation of such game.
[Added 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
C. 
No authorized organization licensed under the provisions of this chapter shall purchase or receive any supplies or equipment specifically designed or adapted for use in the conduct of bingo games from other than a supplier licensed under the Bingo Control Law[1] or from another authorized organization.
[Added 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
[1]
Editor's Note: See § 430 et seq. of the General Municipal Law.
D. 
The entire net proceeds of any game or games and of any rental shall be exclusively devoted to the lawful purposes of the organization permitted to conduct the same.
[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
E. 
No single prize shall exceed the sum or value of two hundred fifty dollars ($250.).
F. 
No series of prizes on any one (1) occasion shall aggregate more than one thousand dollars ($1,000.).
G. 
No person, except a bona fide member of such organization, shall participate in the management or operation of such game.
H. 
No person shall receive any remuneration for participating in the management or operation of any such game.
I. 
The unauthorized conduct of a bingo game and any willful violation of any provision of this chapter shall constitute and be punishable as a misdemeanor.
J. 
Limited period bingo shall be conducted in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and the rules and regulations of the Commission.
[Added 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]

§ 31-6 Issuance of license; fees; duration of license.

A. 
The Town Board of the Town of Fort Edward shall cause to be investigated the qualifications of each applicant and the merits of each application with due expedition after the filing of the application. Such investigation shall be made with the view to determining whether the applicant is duly qualified to be licensed under this chapter to hold, operate and conduct games of bingo under the provisions of this chapter and the rules and regulations governing the holding, operation and conduct thereof in the Town of Fort Edward; that the member or members of the applicant designated in the application to hold, operate or conduct the games of bingo, which the license was applied for, are bona fide active members of the applicant and are persons of good moral character and have never been convicted of a crime; that such games of bingo are to be held, operated and conducted in accordance with the provisions of this chapter and in accordance with the rules and regulations governing the holding, operation and conduct thereof and that the proceeds thereof are to be disposed of as provided by this chapter; and if said Town Board of the Town of Fort Edward is satisfied that no commission, salary, compensation, reward or recompense whatsoever will be paid or given to any person holding, operating or conducting or assisting in the holding, operation and conduct of any such games of bingo, except as in this chapter otherwise provided, and that no prize will be offered and given in excess of the sum or value of $250 in any single game of bingo, and that the aggregate of all prizes offered and given in all of such games of bingo held, operated and conducted on a single occasion under said license shall not exceed the sum or value of $1,000, it shall issue a license to the applicant for the holding, operation and conduct of the specific kinds of games of bingo applied for, accordingly, upon payment of a license fee or fees in the amount adopted by the Town Board pursuant to Town Code § 50-1 and listed on the Fee Schedule[1] for each occasion upon which any games of bingo are to be conducted under such license.
[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998; 6-13-2005 by L.L. No. 6-2005]
[1]
Editor's Note: The Fee Schedule is on file in the Town offices. See § 50-1.
B. 
On or before the 30th day of each month, the Supervisor of the Town of Fort Edward shall transmit to the State Comptroller a sum equal to eleven dollars and twenty-five cents ($11.25) per occasion of all license fees collected for the conduct of bingo and fifty percent (50%) of all commercial lessor license fees collected by the Town of Fort Edward pursuant to this section during the preceding calendar month.
[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
C. 
No license shall be issued under this chapter which shall be effective for a period of more than one (1) year.

§ 31-7 Hearing; amendment of license.

A. 
No application for a license hereunder shall be denied by the Town Board of the Town of Fort Edward until after a hearing, held on due notice to the applicant, at which the applicant shall be entitled to be heard upon the qualifications of the applicant and the merits of the application.
B. 
Any license issued under this chapter may be amended upon application to said Town Board if the subject matter of the proposed amendment could lawfully and properly have been included in the original license and upon the payment of such additional license fee, if any, as would have been payable if it had been so included.

§ 31-8 Form of license.

Each license shall be in such form as shall be prescribed in the rules and regulations promulgated by the Control Commission.

§ 31-9 Supervision of games; right of entry.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
A. 
The Town Board of the Town of Fort Edward shall have and exercise control and supervision over all games of bingo held, operated or conducted under such license, and such Town Board and the Control Commission shall have the power and authority to suspend any such license and, after notice and hearing, to revoke the same for violation of any provision of such license, this chapter, §§ 475 to 499 of the General Municipal Law or the rules and regulations of the Control Commission.
B. 
The Town Board and the Control Commission or any officer designated by them shall have the right of entry at all times into any premises where any such game of bingo is being held. operated or conducted or where it is intended that any such game of bingo shall be held, operated or conducted or where any equipment being used or intended to be used in the conduct thereof is found, for the purpose of inspecting the same.

§ 31-10 Conduct restricted to certain days.

Such games may be held on any day provided for in such license, excluding Sunday.

§ 31-11 Participation by minors.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
No person under the age of eighteen (18) years shall be permitted to participate in any game or games of bingo held, operated or conducted pursuant to any license issued under this chapter unless accompanied by an adult.

§ 31-12 Frequency of games; alcoholic beverages.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
No game or games of bingo shall be held, operated or conducted under any license issued under this chapter oftener than on six (6) days in any one (1) calendar month or in any room or outdoor area where alcoholic beverages are sold or served during the progress of the game or games.

§ 31-13 Persons conducting games; equipment; expenses; compensation.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
A. 
No person shall hold, operate or conduct any game or games of bingo under any license issued under this chapter except an active member of the authorized organization to which the license is issued, and no person shall assist in the holding, operating or conducting of any game or games of bingo under such license except such an active member or member of an organization or association which is an auxiliary to the licensee or a member of an organization or association of which such licensee is an auxiliary or member of an organization or association which is affiliated with the licensee by being, with it, auxiliary to another organization or association, and except bookkeepers or accountants as hereinafter provided, and no such game of bingo shall be conducted with any equipment except such as shall be owned absolutely or used without payment of any compensation therefor by the licensee, and no item of expense shall be incurred or paid in connection with the holding, operating or conducting of any game of bingo held, operated or conducted pursuant to any license issued under this chapter, except such as are bona fide items of reasonable amount for goods, wares and merchandise furnished or services rendered which are reasonably necessary to be purchased or furnished for the holding, operating or conducting thereof under any circumstances whatever.
B. 
No rental shall be paid for the use of any premises for holding, operating or conducting any such game of bingo thereon or for any other purpose in connection with the holding, operating or conducting thereof unless the amount of such rental is stated in a statement annexed to the application for the license, as provided in § 480 of the General Municipal Law, or which is in excess of the sum stated as the rental to be charged therefor in such statement; and no commission, salary, compensation, reward or recompense whatever shall be paid or given, directly or indirectly, to any person holding, operating or conducting or assisting in the holding, operation or conduct of any game of bingo so held, operated or conducted, except that reasonable compensation may be paid to bookkeepers or accountants for bookkeeping or accounting services rendered according to a schedule of compensation prescribed by the rules of the Control Commission.

§ 31-14 Admission charge; prizes.

A. 
Not more than one dollar and twenty-five cents ($1.25) shall be charged by any licensee for admission to any room or place in which any game or games of bingo are to be held, operated and conducted under any license issued under this chapter, which admission fee, upon payment thereof, shall entitle the person paying the same to a card entitling him to participate without additional charge in all regular games of bingo to be played under such license on such occasion. and no charge in excess of one dollar and twenty-five cents ($1.25) shall be made for a single opportunity to participate in all special games to be played under such license on such occasion.
[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
B. 
No prize greater in amount or value than two hundred fifty dollars ($250.) shall be offered or given in any single game conducted under any such license, and the aggregate amount or value of all prizes offered or given in all games played on a single occasion shall not exceed one thousand dollars ($1,000.), and all winners shall be determined and all prizes shall be awarded in any game played on any occasion within the same calendar day as that upon which the game was played. No alcoholic beverage shall be offered or given as a prize in any such game.

§ 31-15 Advertising.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
No game of bingo to be conducted under any license issued under this chapter shall be advertised as to its location, the time when it is to be or has been played or the prizes awarded or to be awarded by means of newspapers, radio, television or sound trucks or by means of billboards, posters or handbills or any other means addressed to the general public, except that one (1) sign not exceeding sixty (60) square feet in area may be displayed on or adjacent to the premises where the game will be played, and an additional sign may be displayed on or adjacent to the premises where the prize or prizes are displayed, and additional signs may be displayed upon any fire-fighting equipment belonging to any licensee which is a volunteer fire company or upon any first-aid or rescue-squad equipment belonging to any licensee which is a first-aid or rescue squad in and throughout the community or communities served by such volunteer fire company or such first-aid or rescue squad, as the case may be.

§ 31-16 Records; quarterly report.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
A. 
Within seven (7) days after the conclusion of the holding, operating and conducting of any such game of bingo, the authorized organization which held, operated or conducted the same and its members who were in charge thereof shall furnish to the Clerk of the Town of Fort Edward a duly verified statement showing the amount of the gross receipts derived from each game of bingo, which shall include receipts from the sale of shares, tickets or rights in any manner connected with participation in said game or the right to participate therein, each item of expense incurred or paid and each item of expenditure made or to be made, the name and address of each person to whom each such item has been paid or is to be paid, with a detailed description of the merchandise purchased or the services rendered therefor, the net profit derived from each such game of bingo and the use to which such net profit has been or is to be applied and a list of prizes offered and given, with the respective values thereof, and it shall be the duty of such licensee to maintain and keep such books and records as may be necessary to substantiate the particulars of each such report.
B. 
Within fifteen (15) days after the end of each calendar quarter during which there has been any occasion of bingo, a summary statement of such information, in a form prescribed by the state, shall be furnished in the same manner to the State Racing and Wagering Board.

§ 31-17 Examination of records and personnel.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
The Town Board of the Town of Fort Edward and the Control Commission shall have power to examine or cause to be examined the books and records of any authorized organization to which any such license is issued so far as they may relate to any transactions connected with the holding, operating and conducting of any game of bingo thereunder and to examine any manager, officer, director, agent member or employee thereof under oath in relation to the conduct of any such game of bingo under any such license, but any information so received shall not be disclosed except so far as may be necessary for the purpose of carrying out the provisions of this chapter.

§ 31-18 Appeals.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
Any applicant for or holder of any license issued or to be issued under this chapter aggrieved by any action of the Town Board of the Town of Fort Edward concerning an application which has been made or a license which has been issued may appeal to the Control Commission from the determination of the town, its officers or agents by filing with said Town Board a written notice of appeal within thirty (30) days after the determination of action appealed from, and upon the hearing of such appeal, the evidence, if any, taken before said Town Board and any additional evidence may be produced and shall be considered in arriving at a determination of the matters in issue, and the action of the Control Commission upon said appeal shall be binding upon the town and all parties to said appeal.

§ 31-19 Immunity from prosecution; exceptions.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
No person or corporation lawfully conducting or participating in the conduct of, possessing, selling or in any manner disposing of any shares, tickets or rights to participate in or permitting the conduct upon any premises owned by him or it of any game of bingo conducted or to be conducted under any license lawfully issued pursuant to this chapter shall be liable to prosecution or conviction for violation of any provision of Article 225 of the Penal Law or any other law or ordinance to the extent that such conduct is specifically authorized by this chapter, but this immunity shall not extend to any person or corporation knowingly conducting or participating in the conduct of any game of bingo under any license obtained by any false pretense or statement made in any application for such license or otherwise or possessing, selling or disposing of shares, tickets or rights to participate in or permitting the conduct upon any premises owned by him or it of any game of bingo conducted under any license known to him or it to have been obtained by any such false pretense or statement.

§ 31-20 Offenses; forfeiture of license.

[Amended 6-20-1988 by L.L. No. 3-1998]
Any person, association or corporation who or which shall make any false statement in any application for any such license or in any statement annexed thereto or shall pay any rental for the use of any premises for holding, operating or conducting any game of bingo under this chapter or for any other purpose in connection with the holding, operating or conducting thereof, unless the amount of such rental is stated in a statement annexed to the application for the license as provided in § 31-4 of this chapter, or shall pay or receive any sum for such rental in excess of the sum stated as the rental to be charged therefor in such statement executed by him or on its behalf or shall fail to keep such books and records as shall fully and truly record all transactions connected with the holding, operating and conducting of games of bingo under any such license or shall falsify or make any false entry in any book or record so far as they relate to any transaction connected with the holding, operating or conducting of any game of bingo under any such license or shall violate any of the provisions of this chapter or of any term of such license shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and shall forfeit any license issued to it under this chapter and be ineligible to apply for a license under this chapter for one (1) year thereafter.

§ 31-21 Amendment of chapter.

This chapter may be amended from time to time or repealed by said Town Board, and such amendment or repeal, as the case may be, may be made effective and operative not earlier than thirty (30) days following the date of enactment of the local law or ordinance affecting such amendment or repeal, as the case may be; and the approval of a majority of the electors shall not be a condition prerequisite to the taking effect of such local law or ordinance.

§ 31-22 Delegation of authority.

The Town Board of the Town of Fort Edward may delegate to an officer or officers thereof designated by it for that purpose any of the authority granted to it hereby in relation to the issuance, amendment and cancellation of licenses, the conduct of investigations and hearings, the supervision of the operation of the games and the collection and transmission of fees.

§ 31-23 Approval at referendum required.

The provisions of this chapter shall remain inoperative unless and until a proposition therefor submitted at a general or special election in the Town of Fort Edward shall be approved by a vote of the majority of the qualified electors voting thereon. In the event that such proposition is so approved, this chapter shall become effective immediately after filing a copy thereof with the control commission.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: This ordinance was passed at referendum 11-4-58.