|(a) The purpose of this section is to provide guidance
for administering sanctions to licensees and other persons that violate
the Bingo Enabling Act and/or the Charitable Bingo Administrative
Rules. The Schedule of Sanctions attached to §402.706(c) provides
a list of the most common violations and the sanctions generally assessed
for those violations, though the Commission may deviate from the schedule
if it has a reasonable basis to do so. The objectives for applying
sanctions are to protect the public, encourage compliance with the
Bingo Enabling Act and the Charitable Bingo Administrative Rules,
deter future violations, offer opportunities for rehabilitation as
appropriate, punish violators, and deter others from committing violations.
This section is intended to promote consistent sanctions for similar
violations, facilitate timely resolution of cases and encourage settlements.
(b) The Commission, through the Director of the Charitable
Bingo Operations Division or their designee, may offer settlements
to persons charged with violating the Bingo Enabling Act and/or the
Charitable Bingo Administrative Rules.
(c) Unless otherwise provided by this subchapter, the
terms and conditions of a settlement agreement between the Commission
and a person charged with violating the Bingo Enabling Act and/or
the Charitable Bingo Administrative Rules will be based on the Schedule
of Sanctions incorporated into this section.
(d) The following words and terms, when used in this
section and §402.707, shall have the following meanings, unless
the context clearly indicates otherwise:
(1) Bingo Enabling Act--Occupations Code, Chapter 2001.
(2) Charitable Bingo Administrative Rules--Texas Administrative
Code, Title 16, Part 9, Chapter 402.
(3) Licensee--a person issued a license under Occupations
Code, Chapter 2001, or a Unit.
(4) Organization--a licensee, an applicant for a license,
or a person required to obtain a bingo license.
(5) Respondent--a person responsible for answering
a charge of violating the Bingo Enabling Act and/or the Charitable
Bingo Administrative Rules.
(6) Sanctions--revocation and suspension of a license,
denial or an original or renewal application, denial of a bingo worker
registry application, removal from the registry of bingo workers,
administrative penalty, and warning letter.
(e) The Commission shall render the final decision
in a contested case and has the responsibility to assess sanctions
against licensees who are found to have violated the Bingo Enabling
Act and/or the Charitable Bingo Administrative Rules. The Commission
welcomes any recommendation of an administrative law judge as to the
appropriate sanctions imposed, but the Commission is not necessarily
bound by such recommendations. A determination of the appropriate
sanction is reserved to the Commission consistent with the Bingo Enabling
(f) Additional remedies may be imposed along with or
in lieu of sanctions, which may include: a redeposit of funds to the
bingo account; a removal of funds from the bingo account; or a disbursement
of net proceeds in order to comply with the charitable distribution
(g) A settlement agreed to under this section shall
be in the form of a written Memorandum of Agreement and Consent Order
prepared by the Commission that must be signed by both parties. A
Memorandum of Agreement and Consent Order shall contain findings of
fact and conclusions of law. The conditions of the settlement, including
the imposition of sanctions, shall be completed within the time frame
provided for in the settlement. Failure to comply with the conditions
of the settlement may subject the respondent to further administrative
(h) The list of violations in the Schedule of Sanctions
is not an exclusive list of violations of the Bingo Enabling Act or
the Charitable Bingo Administrative Rules.
(i) If a person is charged with a repeat violation
within 36 months (3 years) of a previous violation, then the sanction
for a repeat violation will be imposed according to the Schedule of
Sanctions for repeat violations.
(j) The sanction(s) imposed will be determined by considering
the following factors, as applicable:
(1) seriousness of the violation which includes the
nature, circumstances, extent and gravity of the prohibited acts;
(2) history of previous violations which includes:
(A) the number of previous violations; and
(B) the number of repeated violations;
(3) the action(s) necessary to deter future violations;
(4) efforts to correct the violation after awareness
of the violation through personal knowledge or notification by the
(5) any other matter that justice may require, including:
(A) whether the violation was intentional, inadvertent,
simple negligence, gross negligence, or the unavoidable result of
a related violation;
(B) cooperation with the Commission during its examination,
audit, or investigation of the person;
(C) length of time the licensee has held a license;
(D) risk to the public or state;
(E) whether the organization or person has acknowledged
a violation and agreed to comply with the terms and conditions of
remedial action through an agreed settlement with the Commission;
(F) the cost of the investigation, examination or audit
associated with the violation.
(k) If the Director or the Director's designee and
the authorized representative for the respondent agree, the two parties
may utilize §402.707, Expedited Administrative Penalty Guideline
as alternative guidance related to this subsection.
(l) The Commission may impose lesser sanctions than
those listed in the Schedule of Sanctions for a particular violation
if mitigating circumstances exist, including mitigating circumstances
described in §402.706(j)(5)(A) - (E).