Today, the Michigan Gaming Control Board had their monthly meeting to discuss various happenings at the MGM, Motor City and Greektown casinos. After listening to various reports from Richard Kalm, talks of $25,000 in fines for Motor City Casino and Greektown’s refinance issues with potential change of ownership, we get to the public comment portion of the meeting. It looked like there were about 24 people from 8 or 9 charities there to show support for Snookers.
Mr. Anthony (board member), starts off acknowledging that there were many people signed up to speak about Snookers and Charitable gaming. He tells everyone present that the board only deals with casino issues and is only there to help consult with Richard Kalm, if he sees fit to request their opinion on matters pertaining to charitable gaming. Mr. Kalm is more than willing to meet with the charities if they were to schedule time with him. Mr. Anthony then instructed that he would call up people one at a time and they were to identify themselves and how what they were going to say pertained to the business of the board. They would only be allowed 1 minute to comment.
Mr. Anthony calls the first person to comment and after they identify their self as a member of the Knights of Columbus and wanted to discuss the Snookers investigation, Mr. Anthony told him he has 30 seconds left to talk and he could direct his comments to Mr. Kalm. After 2 more people were called up, Mr. Anthony asks Mr. Kalm if he could talk about investigation to help speed this up.
Mr. Kalm proceeded to read the document that was released to Channel 7 News last month. The only additional information was that they had completed “Post Audits” on 40 charities that hosted their events at Snookers and 32 have been found in violation of the Bingo Act of 1972. (The Bingo Act regulates the Millionaire Parties). He continue to state there were 140 charities that were at Snookers over the 2 months prior to December 19th when they stopped issuing new licenses to charities. He did not specify that they were doing audits on 140, just made the statement. Interpret that as you may.
Mr. Kalm said this was still an “on-going investigation” and gave no time-table as to when it would conclude. His department did not have the man-power to “expedite” the investigation and “nothing will reopen until that disposition is resolved.” He continued to state that he hopes to get to the point where he has the staff to easily regulate the 56 license holders, then they may be able to “relax the moratorium.” He did not elaborate on what “relaxing” meant and I will not speculate.
Don from Snookers then came to the podium to speak. He again admitted to over-selling chips at his establishment but also said, “If you find we took even a dollar from any of the charities, I will close down myself.” Mr. Anthony expressed his displeasure with Don for “instructing the charities to email the board” saying that his “muddied the waters” with the board. The meeting concluded with the public portion afterwards.
There was a little more information provided but still no answers for Don or the charities. We will continue to follow this story as more information is provided. Please leave a comment below to tell us your thoughts on Snookers, the MGCB and Executive Director Richard Kalm’s statements. I would love to discuss this with our readers.