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Discussion Before Alabama Legislature On Senate Bill Making Possession Of Gambling Devices A Felony

Rickey StokesSenator

Viewed: 2504

Posted by: RStokes
Date: Apr 30 2013 5:20 PM

MONTGOMERY:    Alabama Senator Bryan Taylor had his legislation as the first item on the list of legislation as the Alabama Senate returned at 3 PM today. This is the 26th day of the legislative session, which is the last day the legislature has to transmit legislation to the house without one vote stopping it.


Senator Taylor, who was a key figure of the Former Governor Bob Riley administration, introduced two legislative acts that were the same. The legislation Taylor pushed for this afternoon is Senate Bill 446, which makes the possession of electronic bingo machines a felony.


Senator Taylor introduced Senate Bill 432 with co sponsors. Reports from Montgomery, Senator Taylor saw SB 432 was not going to make it out of committee, so he introduced Senate Bill 446 which was the same as SB 432.


Senator Taylor then got the legislation assigned to his committee which he was in charge of, Campaign, Finance, Ethics and Elections. Senator Taylor then got SB 446  legislation out of his committee and to the Alabama Senate. The original legislation, SB 432, never passed it out of the committee.


Reports from Montgomery is SB 446 slipped in and out almost unnoticed.


Click for debate on the issue before the Alabama Senate today.   AUDIO OF DISCUSSION


Since last week former Alabama Governor Bob Riley ( UNCONFIRMED but reported to be working for the Choctaw Indians ) and his son, Rob Riley ( UNCONFIRMED working for the Philadelphia Indians ) and Alabama Attorney General Luther Strange have worked the Senators last week seeking support for Senator Taylor’s legislation.


What is interesting, the timing of this legislation is days after the announcement of the indictment of former Senator Lowell Barron, Attorney General Luther Strange was personally on hand in the legislature. Strange was calling Senators to the Lieutenant Governor’s Office to meet with him and he was attempting to get the Senators to pass this legislation.


Senator Sanford asked Senator Taylor is the current laws was a Class C Misdemeanor or Class A Misdemeanor. Senator Taylor did not know the answer if the current law was a Class C or Class A Misdemeanor. The correct answer is, it is currently a Class A Misdemeanor.


Senator Sanford then said that currently the time and fines for 300 machines could be astronomical. Senator Taylor said he has been told by the Attorney General’s Office and Prosecutors the court does not like the stacking of charges. Senator Sanford pointed out to Senator Taylor had been filed against anyone in which the machines had been seized from.


Senator Taylor said the Attorney General has chosen to go civil forfeitures first, then if he prevails in the civil forfeiture, he could press charges.


 NOTE:  To arrest a person for a misdemeanor offense, the warrant must be issued within 12 months of the time the offense is committed. In Houston County, on July 25, 2012 there was the seizure of machines at Center Stage. Attorney General Luther Strange filed a civil forfeiture, Case Number CV 2012 – 900266, assigned to Honorable Mike Conaway. The case is set for trial on August 5, 2013.  My math tells me, this is outside the 12 months from the time of the occurrence. Therefore, the civil proceedings will be outside the 12 months, and there will no legal chance to file criminal charges. So the comment about criminal prosecution after the civil forfeiture, impossible under the current law.


Senator Dial offered a substitute legislation that law enforcement officers who do not prosecute under the new law, would themselves be prosecuted for a felony. There was dialogue on this amendment to Senator Taylor’s legislation.


Senator Dial said, if this legislation passes, a friendly play of Texas Hold’em in your home, this legislation makes it a felony. Senator Dial said the persons doing advertising for the Indian facilities would be charged with a felony of promoting gambling.


Senator Dial said gambling has dominated that Alabama Legislature since the 1970’s. Senator Dial said the lottery legislation affected governors and the way the legislature was organized. The people of Alabama ultimately voted on the issue of the lottery, once the people are allowed to vote, it ends the issue. Senator Dial said he would never say to the people of this state that I am smarter than you the voter. Senator Dial said they are some members of the current Alabama Senate who believes they are smarter than the people of this state. Senator Dial said the people need to vote. Senator Dial said the largest construction project in this state is in Wetumpka and the State of Alabama will not get one dime of revenue from this Wetumpka Indian Casino.


Senator Taylor said he supports the amendment because he feels that law enforcement has not been enforcing the law and that is the reason for the epidemic. Senator Taylor wants to insert the word “intentionally” and Senator Taylor wants to add Judges to the legislation.


There was a motion to cloture, to STOP the discussion and vote on Senator Taylor’s legislation. The motion for cloture ( making the Senators shut up and stop debate ), failed to pass in a 18 to 12 vote.


With that, Senate Pro Tem Del Marsh at 4:25 PM told the members of the Senate he agreed to reasonable debate on this legislation. Senate Pro Tem Marsh said the vote was as good as it was going to get and it was time to move on to other issues.


With that said, the Alabama Senate moved to other legislation.


SB 446 Sponsored By Senator Bryan Taylor


151668-2:n:04/09/2013:JET/tan LRS2013-1897R1


SB446
By Senator Taylor

RFD Constitution, Campaign Finance, Ethics, and Elections
Rd 1 16-APR-13






















SYNOPSIS:



Under existing law, it is a crime   to promote gambling, conspire to promote gambling, or possess a gambling   device.



 



This bill would provide enhanced   penalties for these crimes if the defendant profits from gambling activity in   an amount exceeding $10,000.



 



Amendment 621 of the Constitution   of Alabama of 1901, now appearing as Section 111.05 of the Official Recompilation   of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended, prohibits a general law   whose purpose or effect would be to require a new or increased expenditure of   local funds from becoming effective with regard to a local governmental   entity without enactment by a 2/3 vote unless: it comes within one of a   number of specified exceptions; it is approved by the affected entity; or the   Legislature appropriates funds, or provides a local source of revenue, to the   entity for the purpose.



 



The purpose or effect of this bill   would be to require a new or increased expenditure of local funds within the   meaning of the amendment. However, the bill does not require approval of a   local governmental entity or enactment by a 2/3 vote to become effective   because it comes within one of the specified exceptions contained in the   amendment.



A BILL
TO BE ENTITLED
AN ACT


To amend Sections 13A-12-22, 13A-12-23, and 13A-12-27, Code of Alabama 1975, relating to gambling crimes, to provide enhanced penalties if a defendant’s profit from the gambling activity exceeds a specified amount; and in connection therewith would have as its purpose or effect the requirement of a new or increased expenditure of local funds within the meaning of Amendment 621 of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, now appearing as Section 111.05 of the Official Recompilation of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended.


BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF ALABAMA:


Section 1. Sections 13A-12-22, 13A-12-23, and 13A-12-27, Code of Alabama 1975, are amended to read as follows:


§13A-12-22.


"(a) A person commits the crime of promoting gambling if he knowingly advances or profits from unlawful gambling activity otherwise than as a player.


"(b) Promoting Except as provided in subsection (c), promoting gambling is a Class A misdemeanor.


"(c) Promoting gambling is a Class C felony if the person profits from gambling activity in an amount exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000).


§13A-12-23.


"(a) A person commits the crime of conspiracy to promote gambling if he conspires to advance or profit from gambling activity otherwise than as a player.


"(b) "Conspire" means to engage in activity constituting a criminal conspiracy as defined in Section 13A-4-3.


"(c) Conspiracy Except as provided in subsection (d), conspiracy to promote gambling is a Class A misdemeanor.


"(d) Conspiracy to promote gambling is a Class C felony if the person profits from gambling activity in an amount exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000).


§13A-12-27.


"(a) A person commits the crime of possession of a gambling device if with knowledge of the character thereof he manufactures, sells, transports, places or possesses, or conducts or negotiates any transaction affecting or designed to affect ownership, custody or use of:


"(1) A slot machine; or


"(2) Any other gambling device, with the intention that it be used in the advancement of unlawful gambling activity.


"(b) Possession Except as provided in subsection (c), possession of a gambling device is a Class A misdemeanor.


"(c) Possession of a gambling device is a Class C felony if the person profits from gambling activity in an amount exceeding ten thousand dollars ($10,000)."


Section 2. Although this bill would have as its purpose or effect the requirement of a new or increased expenditure of local funds, the bill is excluded from further requirements and application under Amendment 621, now appearing as Section 111.05 of the Official Recompilation of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended, because the bill defines a new crime or amends the definition of an existing crime.


Section 3. This act shall become effective on the first day of the third month following its passage and approval by the Governor, or its otherwise becoming law.


 


Gambling


Casino Gambling


Crimes and Offenses


Criminal Law and Procedure


Code Amended


 


SB 432


151872-1:n:04/11/2013:JET/mfc LRS2013-1955


SB432
By Senators Taylor, Glover, McGill, Williams, Beason, Smith, Allen, Hightower, Reed, Scofield and Brewbaker



RFD Judiciary
Rd 1 11-APR-13






















SYNOPSIS:



Under existing law, it is a Class   A misdemeanor to promote gambling, conspire to promote gambling, or possess a   gambling device.



 



This bill would provide enhanced   penalties for these crimes.



 



Amendment 621 of the Constitution   of Alabama of 1901, now appearing as Section 111.05 of the Official   Recompilation of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended, prohibits a   general law whose purpose or effect would be to require a new or increased expenditure   of local funds from becoming effective with regard to a local governmental   entity without enactment by a 2/3 vote unless: it comes within one of a   number of specified exceptions; it is approved by the affected entity; or the   Legislature appropriates funds, or provides a local source of revenue, to the   entity for the purpose.



 



The purpose or effect of this bill   would be to require a new or increased expenditure of local funds within the   meaning of the amendment. However, the bill does not require approval of a   local governmental entity or enactment by a 2/3 vote to become effective   because it comes within one of the specified exceptions contained in the   amendment.



A BILL
TO BE ENTITLED
AN ACT


To amend Sections 13A-12-22, 13A-12-23, and 13A-12-27, Code of Alabama 1975, relating to gambling crimes, to provide enhanced penalties; and in connection therewith would have as its purpose or effect the requirement of a new or increased expenditure of local funds within the meaning of Amendment 621 of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, now appearing as Section 111.05 of the Official Recompilation of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended.


BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF ALABAMA:


Section 1. Sections 13A-12-22, 13A-12-23, and 13A-12-27, Code of Alabama 1975, are amended to read as follows:


§13A-12-22.


"(a) A person commits the crime of promoting gambling if he knowingly advances or profits from unlawful gambling activity otherwise than as a player.


"(b) Promoting gambling is a Class A misdemeanor Class C felony.


§13A-12-23.


"(a) A person commits the crime of conspiracy to promote gambling if he conspires to advance or profit from gambling activity otherwise than as a player.


"(b) "Conspire" means to engage in activity constituting a criminal conspiracy as defined in Section 13A-4-3.


"(c) Conspiracy to promote gambling is a Class A misdemeanor Class C felony.


§13A-12-27.


"(a) A person commits the crime of possession of a gambling device if with knowledge of the character thereof he manufactures, sells, transports, places or possesses, or conducts or negotiates any transaction affecting or designed to affect ownership, custody or use of:


"(1) A slot machine; or


"(2) Any other gambling device, with the intention that it be used in the advancement of unlawful gambling activity.


"(b) Possession of a gambling device is a Class A misdemeanor Class C felony."


Section 2. Although this bill would have as its purpose or effect the requirement of a new or increased expenditure of local funds, the bill is excluded from further requirements and application under Amendment 621, now appearing as Section 111.05 of the Official Recompilation of the Constitution of Alabama of 1901, as amended, because the bill defines a new crime or amends the definition of an existing crime.


Section 3. This act shall become effective on the first day of the third month following its passage and approval by the Governor, or its otherwise becoming law.


 


Gambling


Casino Gambling


Crimes and Offenses


Criminal Law and Procedure


Code Amended


 



Discussion Before Alabama Legislature On Senate Bill Making Possession Of Gambling Devices A  Felony

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