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Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Vets ask legislators to help with video poker games

Monday, March 1, 2004

Clay County veterans made gambling an issue at Saturday's cracker barrel political discussion at the YMCA in Brazil.

Several veterans attended the event -- and a few walked out -- when other members of the audience asked the discussion topic be changed. Bob Brush asked the legislators to help Indiana's veterans legally raise money for charity through video poker machines.

After the meeting, Veterans Service Officer Les Walden explained the veterans' concerns.

In January, members of the Indiana Excise Police fined the Veterans of Foreign Wars post due to illegal gambling, Walden said.

At issue were video poker machines. The VFW was fined $1,000 for the machines. None of the machines were removed from the premises, but officials were told to get rid of them, Walden said.

Excise police also confiscated $460 in change.

Through the illegal video poker machines, "close to $50,000" each year is raised for charity, Walden said. That amount totals 90 percent of the revenue from the games.

Veterans attended the cracker barrel session to ask state officials to make the video gambling legal in veterans' organizations, just as bingo, horse racing and the Indiana Lottery are legal forms of gambling.

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