Pace-O-Matic Statement on Ruling of Skill Game Injunction


Richmond, Virginia, Dec. 05, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Pace-O-Matic, the nation’s industry leader in legally compliant skill games, today released the following statement in response to Greensville County Justice Louis R. Lerner’s decision to extend an injunction that allows skill games to continue operating in Virginia. A new trial date is being planned for the spring of 2023.

“First, we want to thank Hermie Sadler and his legal team for fighting so passionately on behalf of small businesses that depend on this revenue,” said Michael Barley, spokesman for Pace-O-Matic, which markets their QVS games in the commonwealth. “We are pleased that legal skill games will continue operating in Virginia and providing much-needed revenue to small business owners across the state. We anticipate the final court decision will uphold the legality of skill games in the commonwealth. However, without further regulation and additional taxation, taxpayers are missing out on nearly $100 million in tax revenue that could have gone toward critical projects along with curbing illegal games that are proliferating in Virginia communities.”

In his ruling, Judge Lerner referenced a quote from First Amendment scholar and lawyer, Rodney Smolla, who said, “the Commonwealth does not control the Free Speech clause. The Free Speech clause controls the Commonwealth.”

From July 1, 2020 until July 1, 2021, skill games provided nearly $140 million in tax revenue for the Virginia COVID-19 Relief Fund and local municipalities. After the law allowing the games expired, Emporia-based NASCAR driver and small business owner Hermie Sadler went to court and won the injunction in December 2021 to allow the games to continue operating in Virginia pending the outcome of his appeal. During the ongoing injunction, however, Virginia is not collecting tax revenue on legal skill games.

Barley added, “If these games were important enough to support small businesses during COVID, they certainly are important now with the economic slowdown and should be allowed to continue operating in a regulated market today and in the future.”

The proliferation of illegal gaming continues to be an issue across Virginia, which has been reported in news outlets in Richmond, Roanoke and Norfolk.

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