Alternately titled: "Vikings, Charities Continue to Not Think of the Children"
Not much of a story here, folks. Regulators have simply (unanimously) moved forward in approving the type of gambling devices used to fund the Vikings Stadium.
Producers now have the go-ahead to design the electronic pull-tab devices and linked bingo games for sale by charities.
The paper gaming lobby apparently didn't approve of the speedy process that the Gambling Control Board used, something which the Board is apparently not losing much sleep over:
"The ship has sailed," board member William Gillespie said to those urging a more deliberative process. "We're moving now. We didn't pick the departure date. It was picked by the Legislature."
Minnesota will become the first state to offer electronic pull-tabs, which is the source of the rancor by the paper gaming lobby. The process, they argue, requires more thorough scrutiny. In approving the gaming devices, Minnesota might well set the standard by which the rest of the country follows for these devices.
For what it's worth, the regulations put forth seem fairly specific, with rules regarding the type of animations and GIFs used by manufacturers in the gaming process to the type of encryption software the games must use.
Reportedly dozens of manufacturers have been waiting for a full release of the standards, and a Las Vegas-based company—Acres 4.0—will lay down the groundwork for their version of the game within a month, following up with a full release within six months.
In order to assuage concerns, the Gambling Control Board has a process in place before the standards are written as formal rules:
The board voted to allow agency staff to consider writing the standards as formal rules later on, a process that allows for more public comment and puts the requirements on firmer legal footing. But that process won't get in the way of the quicker rollout lawmakers envisioned when they passed the Vikings bill in May.
On this one, it seems as if there's no need to quake in one's boots for fear of retribution by the powerful paper gaming lobby.
Full steam ahead.