19 April 2023
Name the last time you found a change booth for slot machines on a Nevada casino floor.
As major casino operators began adopting ticket-in-ticket-out payment systems in the early 2000s, cashing in buckets of loose coins became extinct.
On Thursday, the Nevada Gaming Commission could wipe away the requirement that casinos provide video surveillance of the nonexistent change booths.
It’s one of 16 regulations designated for elimination as state gaming regulators seek to comply with a January directive issued by Gov. Joe Lombardo tasking all state agencies with reviewing regulations and recommending at least 10 for removal by May 1.
In a two-hour workshop last week, the Gaming Control Board ranked the proposed changes following input from the agency’s division chiefs and comments from Daron Dorsey, executive director of the Association of Gaming Equipment Manufacturers.
The regulatory subsections involving video surveillance of change booths, along with another eight regulation subsections identified for language changes, were submitted to the part-time gaming commission, which will make the final determination as part of the panel’s monthly meeting in Las Vegas.
The recommendations will then be forwarded to the governor.
The regulation subsections are within nine of the state’s 37 gaming regulations and, under state gaming law, the control board and gaming commission will have to hold follow-up hearings to officially remove the subsections.
“I think it was time to go through them … to see if we can make them a little bit better,” said control board Chairman Kirk Hendrick at the outset of the discussion.
He suggested the board follow the lead set by Lombardo during his State of the State address in January, when he called out the board’s testing lab, saying that “concerns have surfaced” over the approval process.
In agreeing with Hendrick, control board member George Assad said the technology regulations were the most outdated and should be the primary focus during the regulatory review process.
Still, the control board ranked a portion of a licensing requirement for key employees under Regulation 3 as the No. 1 subsection for elimination. Board members agreed with staff that the regulation requiring employee reports to be submitted twice a year was duplicative for gaming licensees. The information is already captured in other reports submitted by gaming companies.
A $250,000 cap on payouts for progressive keno games, part of Regulation 5, was viewed as the second most outdated subsection. Hendrick said keno regulations need to be updated and correlated to how changes are made to progressive slot machine jackpots.
Agency analysts said there would be a positive economic impact for licensees given that they would no longer need to file requests. Also, the board would see undisclosed cost savings from not having to research the reports.
The technology subsections under Regulation 14 were ranked third through sixth as the most important matters for removal. The regulations cover portions of the licensing process for gaming equipment manufacturers and distributors and the approval process for all casino games, equipment and systems, cashless gaming and interactive gaming products.
During the discussion, Assad often suggested that “the industry benefits” from the proposed changes.
At the hearing’s outset, Hendrick noted he was involved in drafting several of the regulations in the early 1990s when he served as the chief deputy attorney general for the gaming division. He suggested the process would result in a less burdensome process for the industry, “while still maintaining effective regulation that this state desires and deserves.”
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