Harris Co. officials want to hear from you about game rooms

Harris County officials will hear your input on a plan to put new regulations on local game rooms
November 18, 2013 4:35:16 PM PST
The county is holding public hearings on how to best crack down on illegal 8-liner game rooms. Last month, in a hidden camera investigation, 13 Undercover first exposed what goes on inside these operations that run like illegal casinos.

Harris County got approval recently from lawmakers in Austin to go after illegal 8-liner operations. Now they want the public's input on how best to do it.

"What we're hoping is we'll be able to stop crime where it's occurring," Harris County Pct. 4 Commissioner Jack Cagle said.

Harris County is aiming at illegal 8-liner operations, like the ones we saw with our hidden cameras operating inside the city of Houston. That's where we caught operators making illegal payoffs.

Harris County recently won a victory in Austin by getting a law passed allowing the county to regulate them, including where they can and cannot be located.

"Some activities, like the Chuck E. Chesses and the other places, we're not trying to hurt those businesses and legitimate action. What we're trying to do is stop the places where you've been reporting on, where there's the thefts, the robberies, the illegal payoffs," Cagle said.

We told you weeks ago about this 8-liner operation in the city that was next to a daycare. That's where a game room employee was murdered during a recent robbery.

The Harris County Sheriff's Office heads an 8-liner task force, and it's looking forward to new tools to shut down illegal operations.

"What we're hoping to do is allow the county to restrict these businesses that are basically a ruse for illegal gambling and money laundering," said Randy Tunches with the Harris County Sheriff's Office.

Now there are two opportunities for you to have input on these 8-liner regulations.

The first of two meetings will be held tonight at Crosby Community Center on Hare Road in Crosby.

There will be another meeting tomorrow night at Northwoods Presbyterian Church on FM 1960 West.

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