Charitable Gaming in New England varies by state. Here is a brief report on Charitable Gaming in New Hampshire and Vermont. Charity gambling is a “form of incentivized giving.” The intentions are honorable. Simply said, it’s a chance for a charity group to oversee gambling activities, rather than a municipality or private casino. Many states offer usual casino games with the proceeds used to further its charity’s financial duties.
Charitable gaming in New Hampshire includes poker, bingo, Lucky 7, raffles, games of chance and card rooms. The only form of legal electronic bingo gaming is handheld electronic bingo cards. Bingo, originally “beano,” has been legal in New Hampshire since 1949. In addition, New Hampshire approved games of chance in 1977. According to Casino City, “In 2014, the governor signed a bill into law that created more oversight for the charitable gaming industry, which was estimated to produce $75 million in bets annually. The law requires the Attorney General’s office to conduct background checks on operators and limits fees operators can charge charities. At least 35% of charitable gaming profits must go to charities, under the law. In July 2018, lawmakers increased the maximum bet allowed at charitable casinos from $4 to $10.”
The Green Mountain state brings thoughts of maple syrup, dairy cows and Ben & Jerry’s – not gambling. Charitable Gaming in New Hampshire and Vermont ignores gambling around them. While surrounded by states and Canada that offer commercial and tribal gambling, Vermont has stayed away. The Vermont lottery is the main form of betting inside state lines. Charitable gambling is the only legal poker game in the state. Unfortunately, strict conditions exist for poker. To be considered legal, charities must receive the entire proceeds of the game.
According to RealMoney.com, Vermont allows Charitable gambling under strict conditions. “If the entire proceeds of a game are going to a charity, it is probably legal. Vermont has a special exception or charity bingo games that allow the handing out of small prizes. Raffles are also explicitly allowed. Furthermore, Vermont explicitly allows Vegas Nights and Poker Nights. The minimum age for all participants is 18, and the host of the event can’t be earning any profit in the role as host.”
So there you have it. We hear about Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Rhode Island constantly – Maine?, not so much. Gambling is alive and well – even in those New England states considered “non-gaming.”