The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board says that when it comes to enforcing the state’s gambling laws, money should be no issue if money is the issue. It has $2 million in illegal gambling enforcement grants ready to disperse.
The funds are available to local and state agencies looking for some aid in shutting down unlicensed gambling. While this funding isn’t new, there’s a new category of such agencies eligible to apply this year.
Illegal gambling enforcement grants are available now in PA
Each year, the state sets aside $2 million for this purpose. Individual grants can be worth up to $250,000. The funds can be used to cover expenses for things like conducting raids on suspected illegal gambling operations and covering the costs of prosecuting alleged violations.
In Pennsylvania, there are numerous forms of legal gaming. These include brick-and-mortar casinos and racetracks—many gas stations and truck stops within the state offer licensed video gaming terminals as well.
Additionally, residents enjoy a full suite of legal Pennsylvania online casinos, daily fantasy contests, PA poker, and sports betting. Despite that, unlicensed operations remain an issue in the state where the PGCB on its own can’t adequately police.
Thus, it puts out this call for aid each year and offers funding toward that end. In previous years, the bodies eligible to apply have included:
- District attorney offices
- Municipal and regional police departments
- Pennsylvania State Police
- Sheriff’s departments
Any specific task forces created by the aforementioned agencies are also eligible. This year, there’s an expansion of that eligibility targeted toward a specific demographic of the state’s population.
Grants now available for campus law enforcement
Police departments wielding jurisdiction on the campuses of the state’s colleges and universities are eligible to apply for some of these funds for the first time. Although undocumented, troubling signs point toward the prevalence of illegal gambling on such campuses.
For example, an illegal gambling ring led by Vincent Del Guidice included runners on the campus of Illinois State University. Several published papers have also stated findings that college students are more susceptible to developing compulsive gambling issues than the general public.
For those reasons, the PGCB is now making these funds available to impact those campuses directly. Hopefully, they can be effective in deterring illegal gambling throughout the state as well.