CHAPTER 29. MISCELLANEOUS BOARDS AND OFFICERS.

§29-22C-15. License or registration prohibitions.

 

(a) The commission may not grant any license or registration pursuant to the provisions of this article if evidence satisfactory to the commission exists that the applicant:

(1) Has knowingly made a false statement of a material fact to the commission;

(2) Has been suspended from operating a gambling game, gaming device, or gaming operation, or had a license or registration revoked by any governmental authority of a state of the United States having responsibility for the regulation of gambling or gaming activities; or

(3) Has been convicted of a crime, a gambling-related offense, a theft or fraud offense, or has otherwise demonstrated, either by a police record or other satisfactory evidence, a lack of respect for law and order: Provided, That the Lottery Commission shall apply §29-22C-15(d) and §29-22C-15(e) of this code in determining whether an applicant’s prior criminal convictions bear a rational nexus to the license being sought.

(b) In the case of an applicant for a license to supply a racetrack with West Virginia Lottery table games, the commission may deny a license to any applicant, reprimand any licensee, or suspend or revoke a license:

(1) If the applicant or licensee has not demonstrated to the satisfaction of the commission financial responsibility sufficient to adequately meet the requirements of the proposed enterprise;

(2) If the applicant or licensee is not the true owner of the business or is not the sole owner and has not disclosed the existence or identity of other persons who have an ownership interest in the business; or

(3) If the applicant or licensee is a corporation which sells more than five percent of a licensee’s voting stock, or more than five percent of the voting stock of a corporation which controls the licensee, or sells a licensee’s assets, other than those bought and sold in the ordinary course of business, or any interest in the assets, to any person not already determined by the commission to have met the qualifications of a licensee under this article.

(c) In the case of an applicant for a racetrack table games license, the commission may deny a license to any applicant, reprimand any licensee, or suspend or revoke a license:

(1) If the applicant or licensee knowingly employs an individual in a job classification which includes West Virginia Lottery table games management duties who has been convicted of a gambling-related offense, or a theft, or fraud offense under the laws of this state, another state, the United States or a territory of the United States or knowingly employs any individual in a job classification which includes West Virginia Lottery table games management duties who has had a license relating to the operation of a gaming activity revoked by this state or any other state: Provided, That the Lottery Commission shall apply §29-22C-15(d) and §29-22C-15(e) of this code in determining whether an applicant’s prior criminal convictions bear a rational nexus to the licensed profession.

(2) If the applicant or licensee is not the true owner of the business or is not the sole owner and has not disclosed the existence or identity of other persons who have an ownership interest in the business; or

(3) If the applicant or licensee is a corporation, which sells more than five percent of a licensee’s voting stock, or more than five percent of the voting stock of a corporation which controls the licensee or sells a licensee’s assets, other than those bought and sold in the ordinary course of business, or any interest in the assets, to any person not already determined by the commission to have met the qualifications of a licensee under this article, unless the sale has been approved in advance by the commission.

(d) The Lottery Commission may not disqualify an applicant from initial licensure because of a prior criminal conviction that remains unreversed unless that conviction is for a crime that bears a rational nexus to the activity requiring licensure. In determining whether a criminal conviction bears a rational nexus to a profession or occupation, the Lottery Commission shall consider at a minimum:

(1) The nature and seriousness of the crime for which the individual was convicted;

(2) The passage of time since the commission of the crime;

(3) The relationship of the crime to the ability, capacity, and fitness required to perform the duties and discharge the responsibilities of the profession or occupation; and

(4) Any evidence of rehabilitation or treatment undertaken by the individual.

(e) Notwithstanding any other provision of this code to the contrary, if an applicant is disqualified from licensure because of a prior criminal conviction, the Lottery Commission shall permit the applicant to apply for initial licensure if:

(1) A period of five years has elapsed from the date of conviction or the date of release from incarceration, whichever is later;

(2) The individual has not been convicted of any other crime during the period of time following the disqualifying offense; and

(3) The conviction was not for an offense of a violent or sexual nature: Provided, That a conviction for an offense of a violent or sexual nature may subject an individual to a longer period of disqualification from licensure, to be determined by the Lottery Commission.

(f) An individual with a criminal record who has not previously applied for licensure may petition the Lottery Commission at any time for a determination of whether the individual’s criminal record will disqualify the individual from obtaining a license. This petition shall include sufficient details about the individual’s criminal record to enable the Lottery Commission to identify the jurisdiction where the conviction occurred, the date of the conviction, and the specific nature of the conviction. The Lottery Commission shall provide the determination within 60 days of receiving the petition from the applicant. The Lottery Commission may charge a fee to recoup its costs for each petition.