Senator Gallivan Announces Senate Passes "Charitable Gaming Act of 2017"

Legislation Amends Rules on Charitable Organizations and Brings Sale of Raffle Tickets into the 21st Century

Senator Patrick M. Gallivan (R-C-I, Elma) announces the Senate has passed a bill (S.4329) that would amend state law in relation to the sale of raffle tickets for bona fide charitable  organizations.  The changes will allow non-profit groups to sell raffle tickets via the internet and provide for additional payment options for raffles and other fundraising activities.

"The Charitable Gaming Act will allow volunteer fire departments, veterans groups and other organizations to promote and sell raffle tickets online in order to reach their fundraising goals and support the community services and programs they provide,” Gallivan said.  “Updating the state law will bring fundraising activities for these organizations into the twenty-first century.”

Senator Gallivan sponsored the bill in the Senate after learning that out-dated regulations limited organizations when it came to raffles, 50/50 prizes and other games of chance.  Under existing rules, online sales and debit and credit card payments are prohibited.

"In an era when every fire department budget is stretched thin, this legislation will allow volunteer fire departments and many other organizations to raise additional funds in a very convenient manner,” said Jerry DeLuca, Executive Director & CEO of the NYS Association of Fire Chiefs. “So many people no longer carry cash that it is important that we provide them with the opportunity to use credit and debit cards to assist community organizations.”

"Having the ability to run our raffle online, and to take debit and credit cards as payment will greatly enhance the ability of the Buffalo Sabres Foundation to raise additional funds, and to continue to assist worthy charities in Western New York,” said Rich Jureller, President of the Buffalo Sabres Foundation. 

The bill passed the Senate and Assembly in 2016 but was vetoed by the Governor.  In response, additional amendments are being prepared.

The bill is sponsored in the Assembly by Assemblyman Robin Schimminger (D-C-I, Kenmore).