Changing Face of Regulation Focus of Seminar

18 April 2001

LAS VEGAS, Nevada – (Press Release) -- April 18, 2001 – As casino gaming continues its pioneering march into 30 of the Union's 50 states, gaming regulations have risen from the dust gaming's rapid spread has left in its wake. These regulations are as dynamic as modern technology itself and have left operators, regulators and legislators alike wondering if less is more.

Such will be the discussion at one of the more than 20 seminars and keynote addresses that will be delivered at the 8th Annual Southern Gaming Summit, held May 9 and 10 at the Mississippi Coast Coliseum and Convention Center in Biloxi, Miss.

The seminar, "Gaming Regulations: Are the Strings Too Tight?" will be led by Bill Eadington, Professor of Economics and Director of the Institute for the Study of Gambling and Commercial Gaming at the University of Nevada, Reno. Eadington is an internationally recognized authority on the legalization and regulation of commercial gaming, will lead a panel of gaming and governmental experts in a discussion of what the future holds for gaming and gaming regulations.

"Regulation now days is done in the 'velvet hammer' context, where regulators say to the industry, 'Do it yourself or we'll do it for you.' The gaming industry is realizing it is best to act in its own enlightened self-interest, becoming proactive and preempting the need for further regulation," Eadington said. Teaching attendees that concept will be the primary purpose of the seminar.

Eadington said that regulations surrounding gaming have shifted from what they were 20 years ago, when they focused largely on organized crime and the competence of states to regulate their own districts. Debate about regulation today includes Internet gaming, new technologies, modern communication, problem gambling and computer technologies, both on and off the casino floor.

"If you don't deal with an issue that is a serious concern, then someone else will deal with it for you, and it typically follows the chain from operator to regulator to legislature. Unfortunately, the competence decreases as hierarchy proceeds," Eadington said. This seminar is designed to educate operators on the importance of solving serious issues at the operator level, before the debate on those issues travels up the regulatory chain.

Other panelists include Montie Deer, chairman of the National Indian Gaming Commission; Tom Kitts, director of the Colorado Division of Gaming; Charles (Chuck) Patton, executive director of the Mississippi Gaming Commission; Scott Scherer, member of the Nevada Gaming Control Board; and Susan Maven, vice chair of the New Jersey Casino Control Commission.

The Southern Gaming Summit is the only gaming conference devoted solely to the casino industry in the South and the Midwest and is the only conference endorsed by the entire Mississippi gaming industry. It is the largest gaming trade show held outside of Las Vegas.

Last year, more than 5,000 people converged on the conference, which housed more than 120 exhibitors from across the gaming and hospitality spectrum.

Registration is $595, which includes all seminars and admission to the exhibition. Attendees can save $100 by registering before May 1. For more information, visit the web sites or call (301) 694-5243. For information on exhibiting at Southern Gaming Summit, call (203) 852-1340.

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Southern Gaming Summit 2001