Illegal gambling; amends definition. (HB1863)

Introduced By

Sen. John Cosgrove (R-Chesapeake)


Passed Committee
Passed House
Passed Senate
Signed by Governor
Became Law


Illegal gambling; definitions.  Amends the definition of "illegal gambling" to clarify that the purchase of a product or other thing of value (e.g., phone card, Internet time), which purchase credits the purchaser with free points or other measurable units that may be risked by the purchaser for an opportunity to win money, is deemed consideration for the purposes of illegal gambling. The bill also clarifies that the conduct of a game, contest, lottery, scheme, or promotional offering may be lawful if (i) no part of the purpose of the contest is illegal gambling, (ii) no part of the contest involves the use of a gambling device, and (iii) the contest complies with certain requirements enumerated in the bill. The bill provides that it is declaratory of existing law. Read the Bill »


02/01/2011: Merged into HB1584


01/11/2011Impact statement from (HB1863)
01/11/2011Prefiled and ordered printed; offered 01/12/11 11100792D
01/11/2011Referred to Committee on General Laws
01/11/2011Impact statement from VCSC (HB1863)
01/17/2011Assigned GL sub: #3 ABC/Gaming
01/27/2011Subcommittee recommends incorporating (HB1584-Oder)
02/01/2011Incorporated by General Laws (HB1584-Oder)

Duplicate Bills

The following bills are identical to this one: HB1584, HB1700, HB2119 and HB2224.


Kevin English writes:

This bill which will be subject to random interpetation by local authorities will kill more jobs and companies in Virginia. How can the government that runs the worst odds gambling game in the world (Mega Game, Powerball) outlaw these free spin machines? If these operations required one second of the any delegate's or senator's time then we could have saved a small fortune and cancelled this years' session. Keep up the bad work. You people have no idea the grind people are going through in the Commonwealth.

eileen kincer writes:

This bill is unfair to small business people. It allows the government to dictate who can have a legal sweepstakes. This violates free enterprise. Vote no to this bill and tell the government to stop imposing their values on other people.

In addition, it will cost the state thousands of dollars in tax revenue.

david anderson writes:

Do not pass this bill. It will cost people their jobs and cause small businesses to close.

Do not vote to allow the government to say what you can do with your money.

Outlaw all sweepstakes at McDonalds, and all the other places but do not allow this cherry picking.

sherry hill writes:

Say no to this bill. The government is selective in the interputation of what is gambling and what it not. The lottery must be legal gambling.

Marie Cheruka writes:

If the Powers that be want to ban gambling, or what THEY call gambling, then let them ban gambling. Get rid of the State Rip-Off, known as the Lottery, if Gambling is so bad. What is the difference between what the Legislators call Legal and Illegal gambling. Ism't Gambling, just that - Gambling? Another great waste of the Taxpayers money, time better spent figuring out how to keep things running in these troubling times.

Karen Dove writes:

If sweepstakes machines are gambling, then so are the skeeball and video games that the children play to win tickets. You spend $50.00 to win tickets and turn those tickets in for 3 tootsie rolls. Every fast food restaurant, grocery store, pepsi bottle and cereal box has a sweepstakes game....and they all have an element of chance. It seems the Commonwealth of VA is opposed to supporting small businesses succeeded in this economy.

Robert Shriver writes:

This bill really makes me mad at our lawmakers.This is another example of the government 'thinking' they know what people want. Why not put this up to a vote and see what the people want. The government really needs to stop trying to tell me what is good for me, I am an adult and can do that for myself thank you. What harm has come from these machines? I have lost over$20,000 on the Va. lottery but I don't see yall outlawing the lottery.But since that is said not to be gambling by the state its ok that I/we lost money it helps out our schools.Then why is education the first thing to be cut? I believe we as Americans fought 2 wars over these very same issues.Whats next? Do yall pass a law saying what color my clothes are because you don't like the color that I am wearing? Give us all a break and do as your voters want you to do not your own agenda.You are there to represent us not oppress us!

kaye writes:

Too much competition with the lottery sales I guess!How about Bingo, held by churches and fire companys,lions clubs, etc. Do not pass this bill!

Vincent writes:

This is another example of arguing concretes instead of principles. The state needs to decide whether it thinks gambling should be legal or not. Changing the definition so that it cleverly excludes its own form of racketeering (lotto) is a contradiction and immoral.

If you believe as I do, that man has a right to life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness unless they initiate force on others, than you must conclude that gambling in all forms should be legal, except in the case of fraud.

Wendy writes:

It must be nice to have the power to change definitions to legitimize your agenda. I am shocked that this is even being considered. So does that mean if they sell t-shirts instead of internet time or phone cards that this business is legal? How can you approve HB1010, have the state AG say internet cafes are legal, then introduce several bills to reverse this decision without proper research. What happened to due diligence, data findings, impact studies, etc? Virginia constituents, I ask you, Are these the kind of politicians you want making decisions regarding you future. If they support HB 1584 they will be throwing hundreds of people to the unemployment lines. They will have several leasing companies without tenants and a huge loss of revenue for those who own these retail locations. They will be sending small business owners a message that VA does not support free enterprise for the small business owner. VA POLITICIANS...Take the time to have compliant companies show you why this is legal. You are penalizing businesses for having a great and legal marketing tool. Vote 'no' to HB 1584 to allow time to research the facts.