|Action||Promulgation of Charitable Gaming Regulations by Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, including electronic gaming provisions|
|Comment Period||Ended on 11/23/2022|
organization can provide.
The Veterans Service Organizations and the Virginia Department of Veterans Service have a long and important partnership of helping our veterans and families in need, promoting patriotism and remembrance, providing comradeship among veterans, and supporting our guard, reserve and active-duty military members and families.
That is in jeopardy with the proposed gaming changes that include 501(c)(19) that have charitable gaming. VSO posts that offer public gaming fully comply with all regulations, but social quarters proceeds, for the last 20+ years, have been left for us to use for our posts, members, community, and the benefit of ALL veterans. Under the current proposal and Use of Proceeds (UOP) we will not have the funds to accomplish our mission. We use those proceeds to execute our charter of helping veterans and providing social and recreational opportunities for them.
Using last year's stats of our VFW posts throughout the state; we contributed $2.1 million and 253,174 hours for a total of an astounding $9 million in community service. This is a service the DVS or state didn’t have to provide. We provided $515,967 in unmet needs grants for veterans that needed a hand up and we provided $285,171 in scholarships through our Help a Hero, Voice of Democracy and Patriot Pen programs. These were numbers for the VFW, and I imagine the other VSOs have similar numbers.
While these numbers are impressive and show our commitment to veterans and our communities, it won’t be possible if we are not permitted to include our buildings, equipment, utilities, wages, and members in use of proceeds from gaming. Charitable gaming is what enables us to fulfill our mission and maintain the infrastructure required, they go hand in hand.
Therefore, the VSOs should be exempt from regulations of proceeds from gaming in the social quarters and for all UOP to include the infrastructure required to run charitable gaming. We need them to execute our charter of helping veterans.