Gov. Rick Snyder today signed two executive orders that will result in a more effective regulation of certain charitable games and enhance Michigan's crime information system.
Executive Order 2012-4 transfers regulation of "millionaire parties" from the Michigan Bureau of State Lottery's Charitable Gaming Division to the executive director of the Michigan Gaming Control Board. Regulation of other forms of charitable gaming such as bingo and raffles will remain within Lottery.
State law allows Lottery to authorize millionaire parties, which consist of various casino-style games such as poker and are used as fundraisers by nonprofit organizations. However, the proliferation of these games makes it more challenging for the state to make sure they are properly managed and regulated. For example, the games generated $3.4 million in cash activity in 2003 and the amount has risen steadily each year. In 2011, these games reportedly generated nearly $194 million. Transferring regulatory authority to the Gaming Control Board, which is a quasi-law enforcement regulatory agency, will result in more effective oversight that protects the nonprofit or charity group.
"Many of Michigan's fine nonprofits and charities count on these games to raise revenue," Snyder said. "This executive order allows them to continue doing so while also making sure they are not being swindled or used as a cover for criminal activity. We want to protect these civic-minded organizations from unscrupulous individuals who may try to take advantage of them or the generosity of Michigan residents."
The state receives nominal licensing fees for the games but does not share in the profits.
Snyder also signed E.O. 2012-5, which designates the Detroit and Southeast Michigan Information and Intelligence Center as a node of the Michigan Intelligence Operations Center, or MIOC. Snyder pledged to issue the order in his recent Special Message to the Legislature on Public Safety.
MIOC is a central resource for all law enforcement agencies, providing intelligence to officers on the street. It partners with law enforcement officials from nearly every agency and level of government. The Detroit and Southeast Michigan Information and Intelligence Center is managed by the Michigan State Police.
The order facilitates the governor's call for a greater focus on evidence-based policing strategies and technology. Evidence-based policing assists law enforcement in predicting where crime is most likely to occur and positioning resources to prevent it.
"The ability to share high-quality data within all levels of law enforcement is critical to the safety of our communities and state," Snyder said. "Realigning the Detroit and Southeast Michigan Information and Intelligence Center with MIOC will bolster intelligence gathering and sharing capabilities, enhancing Michigan's ability to protect families from all types of emergencies and threats."