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To charitable organizations

STEPHEN POORMAN, CMC

Lock Haven

To the Editor…and Charitable Organizations:

On behalf of a State College client, my firm recently undertook an analysis of revenue that social clubs in nine counties generated from the sale of games of chance (pull-tabs and the like). The Clinton County results were astonishing:

The total revenue reported in 2016 by 14 social clubs in Clinton County was $1,597,451. This was a 10.6 percent increase over the previous year and a 30.2 percent increase over 2014 precipitated by the state-initiated annual compliance audits.

The Local Option Small Games of Chance (Act 10 PS -310-327) requires that, with certain exceptions, 60 percent of that revenue must be spent on public interest programs. So for 2016, over $950,000 was available for distribution to worthy causes!

Collectively, our social clubs have a legal duty to distribute almost $1 million each year. The club administrators often cast their net widely to discharge this responsibility and they support a large variety of very worthwhile causes. But they cannot anticipate every need. Therefore, all charitable organizations should make a case for support to each of the participating clubs in order to share in these proceeds. Mailing labels are available in our office.

Donors are more likely to be confident that they are supporting a worthy cause if they receive a detailed request of the need for support and how donated funds would be spent. The social clubs have exhibited a strong desire to be generous, but they can’t give if they don’t know where to give.

Having worked with many local boards, I know that some local organizations struggle to survive and are close to “turning out the lights;” small games of chance revenue could be just the lifeline they need.

In reference, the following are organizations that reported small games of chance payouts in 2016. The name of the organization is followed by the amount of its public interest payment:

r Sons of Italy in LH — $130,203

r Castanea Fire Company — $117,398

r 40&8 Club — $96,272

r American Legion in Beech Creek — $95,239

r American Legion in LH — $84,910

r Eagles in LH — $79,132

r Moose in LH — $73,896

r American Legion in Avis — $73,258

r American Legion in Renovo — $61,339

r Sons of Italy in Renovo — $60,411

r Sugar Valley Social Club — $34,693

r VFW in LH — $32,430

r Elks in Renovo — $5,019

r Elks in LH — $2,279*

*If a club does not generate more than $40,000, it can retain $20,000, thereby making its distribution smaller.

Lycoming County organizations have access to a whopping $1,475,609.22!

In 2016, the Clinton County Foundation awarded $325,888 in grants to many important organizations. In addition to making your application to them no later than Dec. 15, 2017 by obtaining an online application, make the above social clubs aware of your needs.

Finally, clubs, bars and restaurants now have access to the Pennsylvania Skill Machine® which is a new video that will pay for games of skill, in cash, on the spot. These new machines can produce monthly revenue up to $6,000 per machine! We’ve also studied that data and while there is no requirement to contribute 60 percent of the proceeds, they are an important factor which should allow social clubs to be very generous with local organizations.

Make your case now to get your share of a combined $1.25 million in 2018!

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