AMENDMENT 569 RATIFIED
Bingo Games in Houston County.
(a) The operation of bingo games for prizes or money by certain nonprofit organizations and certain private clubs for charitable, educational, or other lawful purposes shall be legal in Houston County, subject to any resolution or ordinance by the county commission as provided by law regulating the operation of bingo. The county commission may promulgate rules and regulations for issuing permits or licenses and for operating bingo games within the county jurisdiction. The county commission shall insure compliance pursuant to any ordinance and the following:
(1) No person under the age of 19 shall be permitted to play any game or games of bingo, unless accompanied by a parent or guardian. No person under the age of 19 shall be permitted to conduct or assist in the conduct of any game of bingo.
(2) Except for special permit holders, no bingo permit or license shall be issued to any nonprofit organization or qualified private club, unless the organization or club shall have been in existence for at least five years and owned real property in the county for five years immediately prior to issuing the permit or license, except the following:
a. A fraternal, or benevolent, or charitable organization which qualifies as an exempt organization under Section 501(c) of the Internal Revenue Code.
b. A private club with annual membership dues of three hundred dollars ($300) or more.
(3) Bingo games shall be operated only on the premises owned or leased by the nonprofit organization or club operating the bingo game. If the premises are leased, the rate or rental shall not be based on a percentage of receipts or profits resulting from operating the bingo games.
(4) No nonprofit organization or club shall enter into any contract with any individual, firm, association, or corporation to have the individual or entity operate bingo games or concessions on behalf of the nonprofit organization of club. No nonprofit organization or club may pay consulting fees, any compensation or salary to any individual or entity for any services performed relating to operating or conducting any bingo game.
(5) A nonprofit organization or club shall not lend its name or allow any other person or entity to use its identity in operating or advertising a bingo game in which the nonprofit organization or club is not directly and solely operating the bingo game or concessions.
(6) Prizes given by any qualified nonprofit organization or qualified private club for playing bingo games shall not exceed the cash amount or gifts of equivalent value, set by the Legislature, during any bingo session. The Legislature shall set a maximum amount for any calendar week.
(7) One hundred percent of the net revenues derived from operating bingo games shall be designated and expended for charitable or educational purposes.
(8) No person, or organization, or club, by whatever name or composition, shall take any expenses for operating a bingo game except as permitted by law.
(b) The Legislature may, by local legislation, provide for the implementation of this amendment, including, but not limited to, the imposition of criminal penalties for violations of this amendment or the local legislation.
(c) This amendment shall not become effective unless approved at a referendum by a majority of the qualified electors of Houston County voting on the proposition. The referendum shall be held at the same time as the election for the ratification of this amendment, as provided for in Section 2 of this act, and no further election shall be required.
(d) Act No. 93-333, H. 717 of the 1993 Regular Session is repealed.