High Point considers sweepstakes restrictions

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HIGH POINT, N.C. -- High Point city council leaders are considering restricting internet cafe's or sweepstakes in the downtown's Main Street district.

Mayor Pro Tem Christopher Whitley is chairmen of the committee and is reviewing the ordinance. Some council members say they believe too many sweepstakes can send the wrong message to visitors.

"You want to make sure you protect the aesthetics of your main area of town. Particularly with our market being as important as it is," Whitley said.

Some council members would like to see the same restrictions for sweepstakes that apply to tattoo shops and adult entertainment stores.

The proposed ordinance would allow sweepstakes to open in the general business district, north of Westchester, near Kivett Drive and south of I-85.

Whitley says they are looking at other municipalities for ideas on how they monitor sweepstakes.

One option is to charge additional fees per terminal, gaining revenue by charging a fee per machine or putting high taxes in place for the businesses. Charging fees is apart of Burlington and Greenboro's city ordinance.

Under the current High Point ordinance, sweepstake establishments are allowed in any zone without a limit.

Whitley says the council's decision has been delayed until November 20th. At that meeting, council will review crime reports of sweepstakes businesses from High Point police and consider the State Supreme Court decision.