A bid to limit prize money payouts at Irish bingo halls has been effectively blocked by bingo players in Ireland.
The government was definitely taken unconscious of the unparalleled amounts of adverse ads surrounding new regulations, which were expected to restrict the payout of live bingo prizes to 50 percent of net takings.
A well-orchestrated rally saw between 50 and 100 bingo players bused to Leinster House to demonstrate against the idea that it would “shut down every bingo hall in Ireland.”
With the protest gaining significant media attention on national TV, radio and print, their collective voice was heard across the country.
The result was that both parties passed a Sinn Féin amendment to the Gaming and Lotteries Bill on Wednesday night, raising from 50 to 75 percent the limit on prize money paid out by bingo operators.
The limit would only impact bingo halls that surpass €5,000 in prize money. If the prize money is below that, it will be business as usual, allocated as prize money, the largest pot of takings, with the remaining funds split between the bingo operator and charitable causes.
Even before the rally, because of the glaring fact that Ireland’s live bingo games operated in a slightly grey field, with operators exploiting a loophole in the legislation to function as clubs, the bill had a reasonable chance of failing. With Irish casinos that operate technically as ‘private members’ clubs, it is a similar tale.
Live bingo could do with the same degree of control that makes this common game of chance a much safer choice for desktop and mobile online bingo to play.
While this week’s bingo press has been pessimistic, national lotteries have been celebrating.
Camelot Group executives, owners of the UK National Lottery, definitely could not have believed their luck when a £105 million EuroMillions draw was claimed on the 25th anniversary weekend of the UK National Lottery.
And when the winning pair, Steve and Lenka Thompson of Sussex, decided to go public at a live, televised press conference, they must have been delighted.
Another giant EuroMillions winning lottery ticket came from the UK only last weekend, with its holders set to bank more than £ 40 million. This year, they became the seventh winner of the UK EuroMillions lottery, with just EIGHT draws remaining this decade.