COMMON SENSE INITIATIVE – May 19, 2015 CSI Filing
Created by Executive Order 2011-01K, the Common Sense Initiative (CSI), and Senate Bill 2 of the 129th General Assembly, require state agencies, including the Casino Control Commission, to draft rules in collaboration with stakeholders, assess and justify any adverse impact on the business community (as defined by Senate Bill 2), and provide opportunity for the affected public to provide input on the rules.
The Ohio Casino Control Commission submitted the following proposed rule to the CSI office for review on May 19, 2015:
Brief Explanation of the Rule
In addition to the items specifically listed below, many of the amendments remove the terms “applicant” and “licensee” after “casino operator” in an effort to streamline Ohio Adm. Code 3772 in its entirety. This is accomplished, in part, by use of the newly defined term “casino operator” that became effective on December 21, 2013. See Ohio Adm. Code 3772-1-01(B)(2).
· 3772-9-05 (Amendment), titled “Transportation of electronic gaming equipment to and from a casino facility.” Presently, the rule requires that all slot machine software be shipped to a casino only after the Executive Director has received notice of the shipment at least seven days in advance. This requirement is unnecessary and unduly burdensome because Commission gaming agents verify all slot machine software to ensure that it has been approved by the Commission before a slot machine may be opened on the gaming floor. The purpose of the rule is to remove this notice requirement.
· 3772-9-11 (Amendment), titled “Remote systems access.” This amendment shifts the burden of providing remote access to electronic gaming equipment systems from gaming-related vendors to casino operators. Presently, the rule requires gaming-related vendors to develop unique accounts for each of its employees that may access systems at each casino. The purpose of this rule is to shift that requirement to casino operators because they are the entities responsible for maintaining all system accounts, connections, and/or systems at a casino facility.
· 3772-10-07 (Amendment), titled “Annual audit; other reports; currency transaction reporting; suspicious transaction reporting.” This amendment removes a requirement that the casino operators submit copies of Currency Transaction Reports (“CTRs”) to the Commission. Presently, the rule requires a casino operator to submit to the Commission copies of the CTRs that it must submit to the federal government. However, the Commission may access all of these filings on a federal database and a duplicate submission to the Commission creates unnecessary paperwork. The purpose of the rule is to remove redundant filing requirements while ensuring that the Commission has access to all information and/or records necessary to ensure the integrity of casino gaming.
· 3772-10-09 (Amendment), titled “Complimentaries.” This amendment contains changes that have developed as a result of Commission audits. The purpose of the rule is to establish a minimum threshold for reporting complimentaries based on the minimum threshold each casino already established in their Commission-approved internal controls. In addition, the amendment replaces the term “occurrence” with “gaming date” to clarify the complimentary reporting period. Finally, some language was rearranged for the sake of clarity and continuity in order to avoid further confusion in the interpretation and/or enforcement of the rule.
· 3772-10-20 (Amendment), titled “Unsecured currency, vouchers, tickets and coupons.” The amendment removes the requirement that unsecured currency be transported to the cashier’s cage specifically in an envelope. The purpose of this amendment is to remove this unnecessary and potentially burdensome regulatory requirement and allow casino operators to choose the vehicle for transporting unsecured currency according to the process detailed in the rule.
· 3772-10-22 (Amendment), titled “Tips and gratuities.” The amendment removes the requirement that all tips and gratuities a dealer receives be immediately deposited into a box reserved for tips and gratuities. The purpose of the amendment is to allow casino operators to use chip tubes, standard industry equipment, which allow dealers to collect chips and “color up” or exchange a group of chips for a chip of equal value in order to reduce the amount of chips collected in a tip box.
· 3772-10-23 (Amendment), titled “Credit.” The amendment provides regulatory framework for how markers may be issued and deposited in Ohio. Presently, the rule is silent on this issue, resulting in varied practices with no clear regulatory structure. The purpose of the rule is to establish the minimum requirements that a casino operator must have in its internal controls if it chooses to issue markers to its patrons.
· 3772-10-29 (Amendment), titled “Slot machine tournaments.” The amendment provides more consistency between slot machine tournaments and table game tournaments. Presently, the rule requires that casino operators submit written notice to the Executive Director at least seven days before the proposed slot machine tournament. The amendment expands the notice period to at least thirty days, which is consistent with table game tournaments in Ohio Adm. Code 3772-11-18, and will reduce confusion between the two. Further, it allows for casino operators to host slot machine tournaments in areas that may not have access to the slot management system as long as it is monitored by a different method approved by the Executive Director. The purpose of this amendment is to afford casino operators more flexibility to hold slot machine tournaments as they see fit, subject to Commission approval, while providing more consistency between the rules governing slot machine and table game tournaments.
· 3772-11-14 (Amendment), titled “Exchange of value chips or non-value chips.” The amendment provides regulatory framework for casino operators to exchange foreign chips. Presently, the rule prohibits casino operators from knowingly redeeming gaming chips from another casino facility but is silent with respect to how casino operators should handle a foreign chip that may, on occasion, enter the facility. The purpose of the rule is to prohibit casino operators from allowing patrons to wager, exchange, use, or redeem gaming chips issued by another casino unless the Commission has approved internal controls for doing so.
· 3772-11-18 (Amendment), titled “Tournament chips and tournaments.” The amendment provides flexibility for casino operators to submit notice of intent to conduct a tournament less than thirty days before the intended start date of the table game tournament with the approval of the Executive Director. Presently, the rule explicitly requires thirty days’ notice. The purpose of this amendment is to provide casino operators with more flexibility to hold table game tournaments as they see fit, subject to Commission approval, while providing more consistency between the rules governing slot machine and table game tournaments.
· 3772-11-21 (Amendment), titled “Dice; receipt, storage, inspections, and removal from use.” The amendment clarifies the procedures required for inspecting dice before being placed into play. Presently, the language requires that inspection take place before each gaming day, that the inspection take place in front of a floor supervisor and specifies the equipment, location, and procedures to be used. The amendment allows the casinos to conduct the inspection at any Commission-approved time listed in their internal controls. Further, the amendment removes the requirement that the inspection take place in front of a floor supervisor because the process is already in view of surveillance. Finally, the amendment prohibits any scribes or marks on the dice after inspection to further reduce the risk for tampering. The purpose of this amendment is to allow some flexibility to the casino operators during dice inspection while still ensuring that only compliant dice are used in Ohio.
· 3772-11-22 (Amendment), titled “Table game and poker cards; specifications.” Just as in the amendment to Ohio Adm. Code 3772-11-23, this amendment is the result of a waiver that the Commission granted to each of the casinos. Presently, the language concerning the packaging of cards does not contemplate packages of pre-shuffled decks of cards. After a thorough investigation of the manufacturer’s facility, a gaming-related vendor, to ensure adequate quality controls, the Commission granted waivers to each of the casino operators for the use of packages of pre-shuffled decks as long as they have Commission-approved controls for doing so. The amendment still requires the casinos to reshuffle and verify every tenth package that contains multiple pre-shuffled decks of cards, as an added cautionary measure. The purpose of the amendment is to make the rule reflect present practice statewide, which has already been considered and approved by the Commission.
· 3772-11-23 (Amendment), titled “Table game cards; receipt, storage, inspections, and removal from use.” Just as in Ohio Adm. Code 3772-11-22, this amendment is the result of a waiver that the Commission granted to each of the casinos. Presently, the language concerning card inspection and destruction does not contemplate packages of pre-shuffled decks of cards. The amendment specifies how packages of pre-shuffled decks of cards should be inspected and what must be done if any card or cards are deemed unsuitable for use. The purpose of the amendment is to provide controls for the inspection and destruction of packages of pre-shuffled decks of cards in order to reflect present practice in the State of Ohio, which has already been considered and approved by the Commission.
· 3772-11-33 (Amendment), titled “Automated table credits.” The amendment adds table games supervisors to the individuals permitted to enter requests for automated table game credits. Presently the language only permits a table game manager or a pit clerk to do so. The purpose of the language is to afford some flexibility in who may make such a request to account for staffing levels, while still limiting this authority to certain individuals.
· 3772-11-34 (Amendment), titled “Table game layouts.” The amendment specifies that table game layouts not being used for casino gaming or stored in a secure area must be destroyed and removed from the casino facility. Presently, the rule is silent on this issue. The purpose of this amendment is to provide guidance to the casinos in the use, storage, and removal of table game layouts.
· 3772-11-37 (Amendment), titled “Minimum and maximum table game wagers.” The amendment prohibits casinos from accepting wagers from anyone other than an individual wagering from a recognized table position. Presently, the rule does not contemplate this type of wagering. However, Commission staff recognized a need for clarification regarding payouts as the result of patrons “piggybacking” their wagers in games where that was not specifically prohibited. The purpose of this amendment is to expressly prohibit this type of wagering unless the Commission approves a casino’s specific controls to allow it.
· 3772-13-03 (Amendment), titled “Promotional activities.” This amendment adds requirements for each casino’s internal controls governing promotions. Presently, the rule does not specifically require controls for the delegation of authority to approve the issuance of promotional slot or table credits and the limits that apply to each authority. The purpose of this amendment is to integrate those requirements into each casino’s promotions internal controls to more closely align with the requirement for issuing casino credit in Ohio Adm. Code 3772-10-23.
Associated CSI Documents
Business Impact Analysis
Contact Information for Comments
The Commission welcomes comments regarding these proposed rules. To ensure your comments are considered as part of the Common Sense Initiative (“CSI”) review period, the Commission should receive them no later than date June 3, 2015.
Any questions or comments with respect to these rules may be directed to Michelle Siba via email at Michelle.Siba@casinocontrol.ohio.gov or U.S. Mail at 10 West Broad Street, 6th Floor, Columbus, Ohio 43215. Comments may also be directed to the CSI Office at email@example.com.