LEAD PHOTO:  Ben Taylor stands with his dad after discussing his performance in the cattle show on July 18. Ben, 13, has shown cattle for 2 years and has also shown goats and swine. 

The Ashland Board of Alderman decided to write an ordinance to control gambling at the July 17 meeting after hearing of game machines in the Fast Lane gas station on Broadway.

After mayor Gene Rhorer received a call about what appeared to be slot machines at the Fast Lane, he asked police chief Lyn Woolford and the police department to have the machines turned off and turned around. Fast Lane complied while Woolford and prosecuting attorney for Ashland Jeff Kays determined if the machines violated state gambling laws.

Kays and Woolford met with producers of the game as well as Fast Lane employees to see the game described.

“To be a game of chance you have to have three elements. One is consideration, in other words you have to pay something to play. Two, it’s chance rather than skill. And three, there’s a prize or the possibility of a prize,” Kays said.

However, creators of the game machines showed that a small button on the game, which allowed players to see what they would win before they even started the game, proved that the devices were not games of chance and compliant with state laws. Because Ashland has no current gambling ordinance, the city cannot institute harsher regulations than the state.

“I did call Roger Johnson, who would be the assistant [Boone County] prosecutor who handles those types of violations and explained it to him. He didn’t want to really give me an opinion because he hadn’t researched it and looked into it and he wasn’t willing to tell me [what his decision would be] based on my explanation to him,” Kays said.

~ There’s more in today’s Journal ~

By Briley Eilers