FOR OUR IOWA CLIENTS
On 1/26/22 we were notified by the State of Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals that they have re-evaluated the way they view our Rock n’ Roll Bingo events. While they are not considered official bingo games, they do consider them Games of Skill and Chance and a license will be required by the group holding the events. This is just like how a license is required to do a 50/50 raffle.
Two license options are available: A Charitable license for non-profits and an Amusement & Concessions license for those who are not a non-profit.
How does this change the game of Rock n’ Roll Bingo as we know it? While full details can be found by contacting DIA when you request your license, some key points to know are:
Games must now be “fair and equal”. This means everyone who calls a bingo (that has been verified as a good bingo) must receive the same value prize for each game when they win. You can have different valued prizes for each game of bingo, however keep in mind if two people bingo, they must both receive the same valued prize.
Prizes must be merchandise only. No cash prizes. (gift cards are fine)
Rock n’ Roll Bingo will now be played and priced per game (see below). This means each game will be on its own bingo card and players will physically mark off the songs on their sheets. Once we have a winner and that game is over, a new game will begin on a new sheet.
Bingo games must now be charged PER GAME. For those with an Amusement & Concessions license, you are limited to charging up to $5/game. This means it must be clear at the door how many games we are playing (10 is typical) and you would then charge each person for how many games they plan to play. For example: you are planning to play 10 games of bingo. Your organization has decided to charge each player $1/game. If the player plans to stay for all games, they get 10 bingo cards for $10. This means someone who wants to leave at half-time can pay for only 5 games and only pay $5.
Non-profit groups who obtain a Charitable license are not limited to the $5/game rule.
No matter what license type you need to get, you may offer a deal such as “buy 10 cards for $10, get an additional 10 cards for $5.”. This is for those players who like to play two or more cards at a time, and would essentially be the same as the old way of paying $10/person and an additional $5 for a second card.
What does this mean for us as a group wanting to hold a Rock n’ Roll Bingo event? YOUR GROUP will be responsible for obtaining your license. Rock n’ Roll Bingo of the QC is not responsible for licensing, nor ensuring you have the proper license before your event. Licenses can be obtained by calling the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals at 515-281-6848 or by visiting their website at DIA.iowa.gov. There is an approximate 30-day processing time. DO NOT MARK “BINGO” ON THE APPLICATION as the state does not consider what we do a legal bingo game and this may delay your processing time. It is considered a game of skill and chance.
What will Rock n’ Roll Bingo now provide at our bingo events? Since each player will now be playing each game on a “fresh” bingo card, this means a significant amount of cards must be printed and brought to each event. At this time we do not plan to increase our base fee to cover this cost, however we do plan to change the size of our bingo cards to something smaller and we will no longer be offering categories of music. We are making this change so that we may reuse any leftover bingo cards at our next event. Please be patient with us, as this is all new for us as well and our policies regarding our fees may change. What has not changed for us is our desire to make your bingo night successful, fun and make your organization the most money possible!
We will be bringing some simple signage that any of you can use for your pricing.
Your hosting fee will include up to 200 packs of bingo cards (bingos booked before 1-1-23 will include up to 300 packs of bingo cards), sound and emcee service. You will need to provide the venue, approximately 25 bingo prizes (EVERYONE who gets a bingo wins a prize under these new rules) and anything else you want to have to make more money for your group (raffles, silent auction, food, etc.
These rules will not apply to our bar owners and corporate customers who are not collecting a fee from folks to play bingo. These rules also do not apply to organizations holding their events in Illinois. Everything there will remain the same as it has been.
Please reach out to us at 309-798-7817 if you have any questions. You can also find us on Facebook or through our website at QCRocknRollBingo.com.
Adam and Amy Warren