CHARLESTON, W.Va. -- State Lottery Commissioners Tuesday adopted a "don't advertise-don't tell" policy that will allow bus tour day-trips to The Greenbrier casino to continue.
After more than an hour of debate, commissioners Tuesday adopted a new definition of "event" under the state historic resort gambling law that will allow day-trippers to continue to have access to the resort's $80 million casino.
Commissioner Michael Adams said the previous Lottery rule was confusing, since it spelled out things that would not qualify as events under the law, but did not define what constitutes events.
"By virtue of not having a clearly defined definition of event, these bus tours had started and that became a matter of concern," Adams said of bus companies in Roanoke and other western Virginia cities that were advertising Greenbrier casino day trips.
"We've tried to move to give a positive, affirmative definition," he said.
Under the law legalizing casino gaming at the resort, access to the casino is limited to registered overnight guests at the hotel, or to persons attending conferences, conventions or other "events" at the resort, when 400 or more rooms at the hotel are booked.
On Tuesday, the commission adopted a two-prong definition of events, first outlining distinctive or unique events, including weddings, concerts, the PGA golf tournament and other sporting events.
Other activities can qualify as events, under the new rule, if they:
Greenbrier lobbyist Larry Puccio told the commissioners he believes the issue is not the day-trips to the casino, but that some bus tour companies were advertising them as "casino trips."