weather icon Mostly Cloudy

Nye County not interested in tightening tavern laws

Nye County does not appear interested in following the same path as their neighbor to the east in pursuing tighter tavern regulations.

Clark County commissioners last Wednesday approved regulations, aimed at Dotty’s tavern chain, affecting slot machine operations in taverns. The changes passed on a 6-1 vote of the regulations.

But in Nye County, Licensing and Liquor Board Chairman and County Commissioner Butch Borasky doesn’t have any appetite to impose similar regulations here.

“Something like that, I don’t think any of my fellow commissioners have an appetite for going after small business,” Borasky said.

Dotty’s has three locations in Pahrump, including the old Benderz Bar at 3610 S. Highway 160, which opened last March. Each location has 15 slots.

Mike Eide, Dotty’s chief operating and financial officer, said Monday the company does “not believe anything will occur in Pahrump.”

The Clark County changes had the support of the Nevada Resort Association, Station Casinos and tavern operator Golden Gaming. Golden Gaming, which claims to be Nye County’s largest employer at more than 500 employees countywide, owns the Pahrump Nugget Hotel &Casino, Gold Town Casino, and Lakeside Casino &RV Park.

Golden Gaming did not return a request for comment by press time Tuesday. However, Borasky said he doesn’t believe commissioners would be “interested in beating up on Dotty’s to help the bigger casinos.”

“What’s all is fair in love and war whether they’ve got five machines or 500 machines,” Borasky said. “They’ve all got to fight for it. That’d be my position on that. I don’t see anything coming up on the agenda and I don’t think anybody’s asked us to put something on the agenda.”

Golden Gaming attorney Sean Higgins told the Clark County commission that the regulation changes there “levels the playing field and requires people who are operating slot parlors to operate a true business other than gaming.”

Gaming laws require that revenue from slot machines in restricted locations that have up to 15 machines must be incidental to the business’s primary purpose. The definition of incidental has been left open, and most Dotty’s locations make more than half of the revenue from gaming.

The new Clark County ordinance requires taverns to operate a full-service kitchen and embed more than half of the location’s slot machines into a bar top. If that requirement isn’t accomplished, the taverns must show that slot machine revenue is 50 percent or less than other revenue.

If a tavern is unable to accomplish at least one of those requirements, it must reduce the number of slot machines from 15 to seven. The ordinance is effective immediately for future tavern applicants.

Dotty’s business model, which offers a simple food and beverage selection with 15 slot machines, has come under scrutiny, with critics contending it’s more a slot parlor than a tavern with incidental gaming.

Dotty’s has 120 taverns in Nevada, 80 of them with 15 slot machines apiece. The changes affect 25 of the 28 Dotty’s locations in unincorporated Clark County.

“I’m disappointed,” Eide said. “At this point, it is what it is.”

The company has estimated it would cost $10 million to comply with the Clark County ordinance.

Don't miss the big stories. Like us on Facebook.
Development of Pahrump’s Kellogg Park tracking right along

Development of Pahrump’s newest park, Kellogg Park on the southern end of the valley, continues to move along steadily, with a variety of milestones reached in recent months and officials with the town of Pahrump and Nye County now setting their sights on the next steps of the development process.

PLAC to decide on Rough Hat recommendations; meeting Nov. 30 in Pahrump

Throughout its many years, the Pahrump Public Lands Advisory Committee hasn’t seen a whole lot of community involvement, with the group historically hosting its monthly meetings amid almost empty audiences.

Together With Veterans hosting SWOT assessment meeting in Pahrump

The men and women who have served in the United States military have given of themselves, made sacrifices on a daily basis and put the safety of others before themselves in order to protect America but when service comes to an end and they return to civilian life, the transition can be jarring.

Beatty Advisory Board deals with trails, racing, blue light

There will be no informal election to choose appointees to the Beatty Town Advisory Board. Randy Reed and Erika Gerling, whose terms expire at the end of the year, were the only people to submit letters of interest, so the Board voted, at their Nov. 22 meeting, to forward their names to the Board of County Commissioners for reappointment.

Pahrump Powwow showcases Native American culture

November is National Native American Heritage Month and there could be no better time in which to celebrate the vibrant culture of the country’s many Native American tribes.

Nye County commissioners push back on COVID, again

Like an array of other issues and topics, COVID-19 has proven to be a subject which serves as yet another wedge between an already divided America and in many cases, it’s pitting local, state and federal governments against one another in a bid to decide what is best for the communities they serve.

Pahrump businesswoman facing embezzlement charge

It appears that the COVID-19 outbreak in a roundabout way has led to the arrest of a Pahrump woman on an alleged embezzlement charge.

Community Christmas Tree Lighting set for Saturday in Pahrump

With Thanksgiving taking place tomorrow and Christmas coming right on its heels just one month later, that means it is time for many to start turning their attention to the most wonderful time of the year. In the Pahrump Valley, the start of the Christmas season is one that is greeted with joyful delight but it wouldn’t feel quite complete without what has become a beloved local tradition, the lighting of the Community Christmas Tree.

Photos with Santa set for next two weekends in Pahrump

In a perfect world, the comfort and security of a warm, soft bed is something that all children would enjoy, but the unfortunate reality is that the world is not perfect.