Community groups and organizations will have an easier time fundraising with charitable bingo through changes to Nova Scotia’s bingo regulations.
“Charitable organizations and community groups contribute to strong communities,” said John MacDonell, Minister of Service Nova Scotia and Municipal Relations.
“The money made through charitable bingos supports volunteer fire departments, churches, schools, minor league sports teams, legions and many other organizations and activities. These changes will enhance their fundraising abilities.”
Charitable bingo wagers have fallen 62 per cent in the last 10 years, resulting in a 46 per cent drop in revenues. After consulting with the gaming regulators, the Metro Bingo Association and bingo licensees, the province amended the regulations.
The move is part of the province’s 2011 Responsible Gaming Strategy to work with charitable bingo operators to help improve the sector’s profitability and long-term viability.
“We are committed to the growth of charitable activities while ensuring legalized gambling is done responsibly,” said Mr. MacDonell. “The changes will help address some of the issues charitable bingos were facing when trying to increase attendance.”
The changes that came into effect this month include:
— Allowing free bingo cards to be issued
— Increasing the daily prize limit from $15,000 to $20,000
— Formalizing special games, such as loonie/toonie pots, and requiring prizes to be awarded within 12 weeks of reaching $20,000
— Formalizing bingo on television, radio, newspaper, notice or similar types of communication, to follow industry practices
— Requiring formal house rules be available to players upon request
For more information, visit www.accessns.ca/alcohol-gaming .