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City targets internet gaming

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BY LINDELL JOHN KAY
Staff Writer

Monday, May 13, 2019

Rocky Mount is gearing up to take on internet sweepstakes gaming establishments.

City planning staff has seen an influx of businesses operating outside the use applied for under their Certificate of Occupancy, with the police department believing these businesses are running internet sweepstakes, said Will Deaton, director of Development Services, in a May 13 interoffice memo.

The General Assembly banned internet sweepstakes in North Carolina in 2010.The city Development Services department has identified more than 20 potential properties believed to be in breach of their Certificate of Occupancy.

Deaton plans to send notice to properties operating outside their approved Certificate of Occupancy that they have 10 days to correct the violation, which are against city code, the city's Land Development Code and possibly state law.

The police department is ready to move forward with investigations and criminal charges, Deaton said.

N.C. General Statute 14-306 makes sweepstakes gaming illegal. The first offense is a Class 1 misdemeanor, the second offense is a Class H felony and a third offense is a Class G felony, punishable by up to 31 months in prison.

City staff and police officials are set to present information about internet sweepstakes gaming at today's Committee of the Whole meeting, which begins at 4 p.m. in the council's conference room at City Hall.

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