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$50,000 settlement added to tip-jar proceeds

February 18, 2001

$50,000 settlement added to tip-jar proceeds



By JULIE E. GREENE / Staff Writer


The $1.1 million the Washington County Gaming Commission announced last week it was distributing to nonprofits includes $50,000 from the Todd Educational Foundation of Hagerstown, officials said.

The $50,000 is part of a settlement the two sides agreed upon in 1998 after two years of legal disputes over control of tip-jar proceeds. The Gaming Commission distributed tip-jar proceeds to recognized charities and announced grant recipients Tuesday.

The $50,000 was added to the $545,259 share for charities, gaming officials said. The Washington County Fire and Rescue Association received the other $545,259.

The foundation pays the county $25,000 a year as part of the settlement, officials said.

The $50,000 added to this month's disbursements includes money left over from last fiscal year, said Washington County Budget and Finance Director Debra Bastian.

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In 1996, the Gaming Commission and foundation argued over who had the right to administer $262,000 in tip jar proceeds collected by the foundation between July 1, 1995, and June 30, 1996.

At the time, a $103,000 portion was given to the fire and rescue association and $32,000 to recognized charities.

Under the settlement, the foundation pays the county $125,000, or $12,500 twice a year until December 2003, according to the settlement and Gaming Administrator Vanessa Hines. Taking into account an initial $25,000 payment, the foundation pays the county $150,000 over the life of the settlement.

The disputed $127,000 was spent by the foundation's owners on legal expenses and batting cages for a recreational area for local youth.

Bobby Lauver, owner of Todd Amusements, had no comment. The Todd Educational Foundation is an offshoot of Todd Amusements.

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