N.J. investigators: Some boardwalk games are unfair

Seaside Heighs boardwalk (Mel Evans/AP Photo)

Seaside Heighs boardwalk (Mel Evans/AP Photo)

An annual summer inspection of games at New Jersey’s boardwalks has found that some are allegedly unfair to patrons.

The state Division of Consumer Affairs last month launched its annual “Safe Summer” initiative, an effort to check boardwalk games for fairness of play and stores for compliance with pricing and refund policies.

“Our investigators comb the boardwalk to ensure a fair and safe experience for the thousands of individuals and families who flock to the Jersey Shore each summer,” said Paul R. Rodríguez, Acting Director of the Division of Consumer Affairs.

Investigators have since visited the Seaside Heights and Atlantic City boardwalks, finding 11 violations that will be referred to the Legalized Games of Chance Control Commission (LGCCC) for possible action.

They say alleged unfair play includes crane machines with prizes too heavy or packed too tightly to be picked up and a boardwalk game that’s impossible to win the top prize.

Beyond the Safe Summer initiative, the LGCCC personnel inspects annually each of the state’s 266 amusement game licensees.

Violations are subject to fines of up to $250.00 for the first offense and up to $500.00 for the second and each subsequent offense. The LGCCC can also revoke licenses.

“Through their efforts, we are making sure that the few stores and amusement game operators who aren’t playing by the rules are held accountable so they don’t spoil the fun for everyone,” Rodríguez said.

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