Electronic Bingo Games Delayed in Minnesota

Electronic Bingo Games Delayed in MinnesotaMinnesotans are eagerly awaiting the rollout of electronic bingo games in bars and restaurants. For decades bingo has been used to raise funds for a wide variety of charities but this is the first time bingo has been used to finance the construction of a football stadium. The electronic bingo games, along with electronic pulltabs were authorized by the Minnesota legislature. Unfortunately Minnesotans waiting to play electronic bingo will have to wait another month because he Minnesota Gambling Control Board delayed the approval for the first games. The first linked electronic bingo games did not get approval because the games had not been certified as meeting state gaming standards. Tom Barrett, executive director of the Gambling Control Board, said “I was hopeful we could have these games today. Am I hopeful for next month? Yes.”

The high tech electronic bingo games have much bigger prizes than the pull-tab games that were launched last September. The manufacturers said that the video pulltabs could generate considerable revenue for Minnesota. Several charitable gaming managers have predicted that electronic bingo games will be well received by the public. They say electronic bingo will appeal to those that do not like the video pulltabs. Before the electronic bingo games can be up and running in bars, restaurants and taverns the Gambling Control Board must license and approve manufacturers, distributors and the games themselves.

St. Paul based E-tab Manufacturing had hoped its electronic bingo game applications would be approved by state regulators by now said Jim Landsem, managing partner for the company. Last summer E-Tab submitted its package application said Jim Landsem, managing partner for the company. In September, it gave the Gambling Control Board its games and its gambling device, which plays the video pulltabs and electronic bingo. In December the board approved the video pull-tab games and currently E-Tab games are in 50 establishments throughout Minnesota.

Jim Landsem said he hopes his company’s electronic bingo game can be approved at the next Gambling Control Board meeting in March. In the future the electronic bingo field will get more competitive in the state. St. Louis based Electronic Games Solutions is also hoping to produce a bingo game soon and is seeking Gaming Board approval. A third bingo manufacturer California based Planet Bingo has received its license pending Gaming Board approval. If the state of Minnesota would legalize online bingo the fundraising efforts would go more quickly.

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