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"Internet Cafes" To Get State House Attention This Week PDF Print
Written by Steve Frank   
Monday, 28 June 2010 05:43

Action from the state house of representatives could come by tomorrow that would eliminate a loophole in state law, allowing “Internet Café” or “Sweepstake” businesses to operate in the state--a number of them in Watauga County.

The Senate voted to close the hole in the video poker machine law that allowed the businesses to offer phone card credits, but lawmen say that the businesses are using off-shore accounts and skirting the pay-off laws now in place.  House member Cullie Tarleton Friday said the house is ready to concur "It will get a committee hearing probably as early as Tuesday and I suspect it will quickly receive a favorable report and then come to the full House floor for a vote.  It will pass overwhelmingly to uphold what the Senate did which, in effect, will outlaw these 'Internet Cafes.'" Tarleton said that the final version of the bill could have it take effect upon the Governor’s signature.  Local businesses, grandfathered from Boone Council action, would find getting their business licenses quite a bit more expensive, with $2000 fees for the first four machines, $2500 each thereafter.

 

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