RULES AND REGULATIONS
PENNSYLVANIA GAMING CONTROL BOARD
[ 58 PA. CODE CHS. 617a, 625a, 637a, 639a, 641a, 643a, 647a, 653a, 655a, 657a, 677a, 679a AND 684a ]
Table Game Rules of Play
[49 Pa.B. 4956]
[Saturday, August 31, 2019]
The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board (Board), under the general authority in 4 Pa.C.S. § 1202(b)(30) (relating to general and specific powers) and the specific authority in 4 Pa.C.S. § 13A02(1) and (2) (relating to regulatory authority), amends Chapters 617a, 625a, 637a, 639a, 641a, 643a, 647a, 653a, 655a, 657a, 677a, 679a and adds 684a to read as set forth in Annex A.
Purpose of this Final-Form Rulemaking
This final-form rulemaking incorporates new side wagers, payout tables and variations of existing table games and adds a new table game to the compliment of games available for play in this Commonwealth.
Minor revisions were made throughout this final-form rulemaking for clarity and for consistency amongst all table game chapters. Revisions to specific chapters are as follows:
Chapter 617a. Roulette
Touchdown Roulette, a new side wager, is added in Chapter 617a (relating to roulette). The layout requirements for Touchdown Roulette are added in § 617a.1 (relating to Roulette ball; Roulette wheel and table; physical characteristics; double zero Roulette wheel used as a single zero Roulette wheel), a description of the wagers is added in § 617a.3 (relating to placement of wagers) and the payout odds for the wager are added to § 617a.4 (relating to payout odds).
Chapter 625a. Sic Bo
A new variation is added to the game of Sic Bo in which a player can activate the automated Sic Bo shaker. Additionally, a new payout table is added to the game in § 625a.6(a) (relating to payout odds) and the language in subsection (b) was amended for clarity.
Chapter 637a. Poker
Section 637a.10 (relating to Seven-card Stud Poker; procedures for dealing the cards; completion of each round of play) allows up to nine players to participate in a round of play, which is consistent with the number of players allowed in other Poker games.
Chapter 639a. Caribbean Stud Poker
In § 639a.12(d) (relating to payout odds; rate of progression) new payout tables are added to the progressive payout wager. The same payout tables are also approved for the progressive payout wager (or referred to as the Five-Card Progressive Payout Wager) in Chapters 641a, 643a, 647a, 653a, 655a and 657a.
Additionally, seed/reseed and incrementation rates are specified for all progressives as these rates correspond with the rates submitted by the manufacturer that were tested/approved by the Board's Gaming Lab. The same revisions are also made in Chapters 641a, 643a, 647a, 653a, 655a and 657a.
Chapter 641a. Four Card Poker
A new side wager, the Six Card Bonus Wager, is added to the game. Layout requirements for the new wager are added in § 641a.2 (relating to Four Card Poker table physical characteristics), the description of the winning hands is added in § 641a.6 (relating to Four Card Poker rankings), a description of the wager is added in § 641a.7 (relating to wagers), the procedure for dealing the Six Card Bonus Wager card is added in §§ 641a.8—641a.10 (relating to procedures for dealing the cards from a manual dealing shoe; procedures for dealing the cards from the hand; and procedures for dealing the cards from an automated dealing shoe) and the procedure to complete the round of play when a patron has placed a Six Card Bonus Wager is added in § 641a.11 (relating to procedures for completion of each round of play). The permissible payout odds for the wager are added in § 641a.12 (relating to payout odds; Envy Bonus; rate of progression).
The Six Card Bonus Wager is also added, in the same format, to Chapters 643a, 647a, 653a, 655a and 657a.
Chapter 643a. Let It Ride Poker
In § 643a.12 (relating to payout odds; payout limitation), the odds for the Five Card Bonus Wager in subsection (b) are corrected to reflect that odds are paid out based on the denomination of the wager placed by the player and should thus be in the consistent ''to 1'' format.
Chapter 653a. Ultimate Texas Hold 'Em Poker
A Bad Beat Bonus Wager is added to Ultimate Texas Hold 'Em Poker. The table layout requirements for the wager is added in § 653a.2 (relating to Ultimate Texas Hold 'Em Poker table physical characteristics), a description of the wager is added in § 653a.7 (relating to wagers), how the dealer is to complete the round of play when a player has placed a Bad Beat Bonus Wager is added to § 653a.11 (relating to procedures for completion of each round of play) and the payout odds are added in § 653a.12(g) (relating to payout odds; Envy Bonus; rate of progression; payout limitation).
Additionally, the payout limitation in § 653a.12 reflects that only required wagers are subject to a payout limitation. Wagers that are optional for players should not be included as a cap on payouts as it alters the approved hold percentages. Amendments to payout limitations to reflect that only required wagers may be subject to a cap were also made in Chapters 677a and 679a (relating to World Poker Tour Heads-Up Hold 'Em; and Three Card Prime).
Chapter 655a. Mississippi Stud
Other table game chapters contain a section addressing the procedures for handling irregularities that occur during play of the game. Section 655a.13 (relating to irregularities) is therefore amended for consistency with other table game chapters.
Chapter 679a. Three Card Prime
In §§ 679a.8—679a.10 (relating to procedures for dealing the cards from a manual dealing shoe; procedures for dealing the cards from the hand; and procedures for dealing the cards from an automated dealing shoe), an alternative dealing procedure is added which allows operators to deal only one community card to be used by all players who placed a Pair Bonus Wager rather than dealing each player who placed the wager an additional card.
Chapter 684a. Four Card Frenzy
Chapter 684a (relating to Four Card Frenzy) contains the requirements for a new table game, Four Card Frenzy. Section 684a.1 (relating to definitions) contains the definitions used throughout the chapter. Section 684a.2 (relating to Four Card Frenzy table physical characteristics) contains the physical characteristics of the table layout. Section 684a.3 (relating to cards; number of decks) details the number of cards and decks used to play the game. Section 684a.4 (relating to opening of the table for gaming) addresses how the dealer is to open the table game for play. Section 684a.5 (relating to shuffle and cut of the cards) details how the cards are to be shuffled and cut. Section 684a.6 (relating to Four Card Frenzy rankings) addresses the rank of the cards and hands. Section 684a.7 (relating to wagers) outlines the permissible wagers players may place during a round of play.
Sections 684a.8—684a.10 (relating to procedures for dealing the cards from a manual dealing shoe; procedures for dealing the cards from the hand; and procedures for dealing the cards from an automated dealing shoe) address how the cards are to be dealt and the number of cards dealt to each player. Section 684a.11 (relating to procedures for completion of each round of play) specifies how wagers are to be settled and a round of play completed. Section 684a.12 (relating to payout odds; payout limitation) outlines the permissible payout odds for winning wagers and allows the operator to place a payout limit, per player per round of play on required wagers. Section 684a.13 (relating to irregularities) addresses how a dealer is to handle irregularities during play.
The approved payout tables in § 684a.12 have a hold percentage of between 1.19% and 1.67% for required wagers. For optional wagers, the hold percentage ranges from 1.7% to 7.23% for the Four Bonus Wager, between 6.74% to 18.1% for the All Six Bonus Wager (the same wager offered in Four Card Prime and Cajun Stud), and from 4.74% to 9.8% for the Prime Wager.
Comment and Response Summary
Notice of the proposed rulemaking was published at 47 Pa.B. 3182 (June 10, 2017). The Board did not receive comments from the public or the regulated community. The Independent Regulatory Review Commission (IRRC) reviewed the proposed rulemaking and issued no comments or recommendations. All changes from the proposed rulemaking to this final-form rulemaking were editorial changes made for publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
Commonwealth. The Board does not expect that the provisions contained in this final-form rulemaking will have a fiscal impact on the Board or any other Commonwealth agency. Updates to Rules Submission forms and internal control procedures will be reviewed by existing Board staff.
Political Subdivisions. This final-form rulemaking will have no fiscal impact on political subdivisions of the Commonwealth.
Private Sector. The amendments contained in this final-form rulemaking will provide certificate holders with additional table game options. If a certificate holder decides to offer one of the games or side wagers within the licensed facility, the certificate holder will be required to train their dealers on the rules of play and purchase new equipment—specifically table layouts corresponding to the game and wagers offered. Costs incurred to train employees or purchase/lease equipment should be offset by the proceeds of gaming.
General Public. This final-form rulemaking will have no fiscal impact on the general public.
If a certificate holder selects different options for the play of table games, the certificate holder will be required to submit an updated Rules Submission form reflecting the changes. These forms are available and submitted to Board staff electronically. Table game Rules Submission forms are available at http://gamingcontrolboard.pa.gov/?p=187.
This final-form rulemaking will become effective upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
Under section 5(a) of the Regulatory Review Act (71 P.S. § 745.5(a)), on May 22, 2017, the Board submitted a copy of the proposed rulemaking, published at 47 Pa.B. 3182 (June 10, 2017) and a copy of the Regulatory Analysis Form to the IRRC and to the Chairpersons of the House Gaming Oversight Committee and the Senate Community, Economic and Recreational Development Committee.
Under section 5(c) of the Regulatory Review Act, IRRC and the Committees are provided with copies of comments received during the public comment period, as well as other documents when requested. With regard to this final-form rulemaking, no comments were received from the Committees.
Under section 5a(j.2) of the Regulatory Review Act (71 P.S. § 745.5a(j.2)), this final-form rulemaking was deemed approved by the Committees. IRRC met on July 18, 2019, and approved this final-form rulemaking in accordance with section 5.1(e) of the Regulatory Review Act.
The Board finds that:
(1) Public notice of intention to adopt these amendments was given under sections 201 and 202 of the act of July 31, 1968 (P.L. 769, No. 240) (45 P.S. §§ 1201 and 1202) and the regulations thereunder, 1 Pa. Code §§ 7.1 and 7.2. (relating to notice of proposed rulemaking required; and adoption of regulations).
(2) This final-form rulemaking is necessary and appropriate for the administration and enforcement of 4 Pa.C.S. Part II (relating to gaming).
The Board, acting under 4 Pa.C.S. Part II, orders that:
(1) The regulations of the Board, 58 Pa. Code Chapters 617a, 625a, 637a, 639a, 641a, 643a, 647a, 653a, 655a, 657a, 677a, 679a and 684a, are amended by adding §§ 684a.1—684a.13 and amending §§ 617a.1, 617a.3, 617a.4, 625a.1, 625a.5, 625a.6, 637a.10, 639a.7, 639a.10, 639a.12, 641a.2, 641a.6—641a.12, 643a.2, 643a.6— 643a.12, 647a.2, 647a.6—647a.12, 653a.2, 653a.6— 653a.12, 655a.2, 655a.6—655a.13, 657a.2, 657a.6— 657a.12, 677a.7, 677a.12 and 679a.8—679a.12 to read as set forth in Annex A.
(2) The Chairperson of the Board shall certify this order and Annex A and deposit them with the Legislative Reference Bureau as required by law.
(3) This order shall take effect upon publication in the Pennsylvania Bulletin.
DAVID M. BARASCH,
(Editor's Note: See 49 Pa.B. 4087 (August 3, 2019) for IRRC's approval order.)
Fiscal Note: Fiscal Note 125-205 remains valid for the final adoption of the subject regulations.
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