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Day trippers can still gamble at The Greenbrier

Wednesday - 11/28/2012, 3:00pm  ET

CHARLESTON, W.Va. - Patrons of bus tour day trips can still gamble at The Greenbrier's casino under a revised state policy that clarifies who can access the facility.

Media outlets report that the West Virginia Lottery Commission adopted a new definition of "event" on Tuesday. The revision addresses concerns that bus tour companies in Virginia were promoting day trips to The Greenbrier as casino trips, in violation of the state's historic resort gaming law.

"By virtue of not having a clearly defined definition of event, these bus tours had started and that became a matter of concern," Commissioner Michael Adams said.

"We've tried to move to give a positive, affirmative definition," he said.

Under the law, only registered overnight guests, or those attending conferences or similar events are permitted to gamble at the casino, if 400 or more rooms are booked.

The revised policy adds unique activities such as weddings and concerts to the definition of "events." Other activities are allowed if they aren't confined exclusively to the casino, have a minimum of 20 participants, charge a minimum $20 participation fee per person, provide seven days' advance notice to Lottery officials and are published in The Greenbrier's daily events calendar.

"This solution does provide a lot of clarity," said Todd Fishon, vice president of Greenbrier casino operations. "I think this is a great statement."

Lottery Director John Musgrave said he believes the new definition is consistent with Legislature's intent. The law states the casino is to be an amenity "that is increasingly important to many actual and potential resort hotel patrons."

The 400-room occupancy requirement always has been interpreted as applying to overall occupancy, rather than rooms booked for a particular event, he said.

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