Syverson: Licensed Beverage Establishments Need Protection from inappropriate Stings
Springfield, IL – New rules could soon be in place before law enforcement could conduct stings targeting restaurants, bars, social clubs, video gaming businesses, and truck strops, Under new bipartisan legislation sponsored by Deputy Republican Senate Leader Dave Syverson. His legislation would create a series of commonsense and important protections for small business owners.
"We all agree that it’s important to enforce the law," said Syverson. "But we need to do it in a way that is uniform and that protects the due process rights of businesses."
The Senate Gaming Committee approved two bills sponsored by Senator Syverson aimed at creating a more uniform and fair process for video gaming enforcement.
Senate Bill 2326 requires the Illinois Gaming Board to adopt guidelines and rules for sting operations similar to those for alcohol and tobacco enforcement. Unlike liquor and tobacco enforcement, where a violation requires an employee to break the law by selling to a minor, gaming stings involve getting an underage undercover individual to play a video gaming terminal with no employee interaction, even for just a few seconds. Syverson’s legislation would require that the undercover operative plays the terminal for a reasonable amount of time before a violation is considered to have occurred.
Senate Bill 2327 would require that officials notify an establishment of a violation within 15 days. The reason for the 15 days is clear. Many establishments have video monitoring that loops every 15 days, while some loop every 30 days. The Gaming Board has up to now been able to wait 90 days or more, giving business owners with no option of video proof as defense.
“We already have strict guidelines in place for alcohol and tobacco stings that are working,” said Senator Syverson. “Law abiding businesses that offer video gaming should have the same rights and protections as those that sell alcohol and tobacco.”
"I would Like to thank Dan Clausner with the Illinois licensed Beverage Association for all his help in bringing the problem to light and with helping negotiation the current legislation," added Syverson/