Effective January 1, 2018, the authority to monitor and regulate charitable gaming in Connecticut has shifted from the Department of Consumer Protection (the “DCP”) to municipalities and towns.
Charitable gaming generally includes bingo, bazaars, and raffles. Connecticut limits the operation and promotion of these charitable games to certain categories of nonprofits.
Under the revised law, the DCP is no longer involved in the process of coordinating charitable gaming applications and collecting information following the charitable game. Instead, a qualified nonprofit will deal directly with the chief of police or, if there is no chief of police, the executive officer of the town in which the charitable game will be held (the “Town Official”).
Each town will be responsible for creating charitable gaming applications, although DCP has offered sample applications on its website that towns may choose to adopt. Nonprofits should contact the relevant Town Official for an application.
Pursuant to the revised law, fees for charitable gaming permits will be set by each town up to a statutorily defined amount. This fee is retained by the town and no longer shared with the DCP. After receiving the application and fee, vetting the application, and investigating the applicant, if necessary, the Town Official may issue the charitable gaming permit. Following the charitable game, the nonprofit may be required to submit additional information to the Town Official.
The DCP retains authority over permitting and sales for sealed tickets, bingo product manufacturers and equipment dealers, and raffle equipment dealers. The statutory change also does not affect requirements related to the DCP charitable solicitation registrations.