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By LVBear

Long-time Las Vegas-based advantage player, casino critic, and frequent contributor LVBear offers his opinions on things that sometimes go wrong in the world of casinos.  Current and past growls can be read, and comments posted, at LVBear's website,

Editors Note: Las Vegas has been embroiled in a controversy over remodeling work done at several Harrah's owned hotels that were found to be in violation of building codes mainly due to improper inspection by county inspectors. LVBear addresses this issue with his growls.


County employees allegedly admit taking bribes from casinos -- Will Gaming Control Board do anything about it?

Previously reported quote from Nevada Gaming Control Board member Randall Sayre:  "I don’t think it is right, at this point, to push a great deal of expense through the entire industry to go look for a maybe."

From page 40 of the recently released 
Kessler Report:

... some Building Division and CCFD inspectors did not want to create a hostile environment at the hotels where they were assigned to inspect complaints since it was alleged that certain inspectors receive comps from the hotels including meals, show tickets, stays at other properties and branded clothing. 

From the Nevada Revised Statutes:

NRS 281A.400 General requirements; exceptions. A code of ethical standards is hereby established to govern the conduct of public officers and employees:

1. A public officer or employee shall not seek or accept any gift, service, favor, employment, engagement, emolument or economic opportunity which would tend improperly to influence a reasonable person in his position to depart from the faithful and impartial discharge of his public duties.

If the allegations in the Kessler Report are true, presumably the District Attorney or the Attorney General will handle the criminal prosecutions of the crooked inspectors who accepted the bribes.

From the
Nevada Gaming Regulations:

5.010  Methods of operation.

1.  It is the policy of the commission and the board to require that all establishments wherein gaming is conducted in this state be operated in a manner suitable to protect the public health, safety, morals, good order and general welfare of the inhabitants of the State of Nevada.

2.  Responsibility for the employment and maintenance of suitable methods of operation rests with the licensee, and willful or persistent use or toleration of methods of operation deemed unsuitable will constitute grounds for license revocation or other disciplinary action.

(Amended: 1/69.)

5.011  Grounds for disciplinary action.  The board and the commission deem any activity on the part of any licensee, his agents or employees, that is inimical to the public health, safety, morals, good order and general welfare of the people of the State of Nevada, or that would reflect or tend to reflect discredit upon the State of Nevada or the gaming industry, to be an unsuitable method of operation and shall be grounds for disciplinary action by the board and the commission in accordance with the Nevada Gaming Control Act and the regulations of the board and the commission. Without limiting the generality of the foregoing, the following acts or omissions may be determined to be unsuitable methods of operation:

1.  Failure to exercise discretion and sound judgment to prevent incidents which might reflect on the repute of the State of Nevada and act as a detriment to the development of the industry. ...

It is obvious to me that issuing comps including stays at other properties to county inspectors who then falsify public records, ignore obvious code violations, and allow shoddy construction work, putting countless patrons’ lives at risk, are unsuitable methods of operation.

Will the Gaming Control Board belatedly make an effort to do its duty, or will it continue, by its inaction, to help enable these crimes to go on being committed?  I suspect the usual "see no evil, hear no evil" do-nothing attitude of the Board will prevail once again.  I hope I am wrong.

County inspector who apparently falsified records for Rio no longer employed by county

Rick Maddox, otherwise known as as the buffoon in charge of the inspection of the Rio, is gone from his cushy job with Clark County. It appears obvious that he falsified his report into the original complaint about the wrongdoing in the Rio remodeling.

Investigation by county inspectors has revealed multiple problems with the Rio work, including repeated failure to seal holes to prevent the spread of smoke during a fire; drilling damage to bars and tensioned cables that are imbedded in concrete to strengthen high-rise floors and ceilings; and substandard wiring in certain locations.

Recently, the district attorney took a step closer to prosecuting parties responsible for flaws in the hotel remodeling. On April 1, David Matthews, the current facilities director of the Flamingo Road hotel, will be arraigned on misdemeanor charges of failure to obtain permits or inspections at that resort.

The county confirmed his departure but will not say whether he resigned or was fired.

Either way, the public is obviously better off without this character feeding at the public trough and being in a position to help despicable corporations endanger the public with unsafe buildings. It’ll be interesting to see if the District Attorney will prosecute Mr. Maddox for his false report (he apparently claims to have inspected 37 rooms in 18 minutes), and interesting to see if Mr. Maddox ends up on Harrah’s payroll, if he isn’t already there.

"21" the movie — A waste of time and money

The movie was awful. I wanted to leave about thirty minutes into it, but my wife talked me into staying. I thought the movie would never end — it got worse and worse as it went on. There were so many errors it was ridiculous. I don’t think even a Kate Bosworth nude scene would have saved this turkey of a movie. I realize it was supposed to be “entertainment,” but one would think that moviemakers would at least try to get simple facts correct. It seemed like they went out of their way to get things wrong. I felt like asking for a refund. I don’t think the movie will have any effect on anything related to blackjack or any other form of advantage play.

Rather than rehash the dozens of stupid things that have been mentioned by others, here are links to good comments about this awful movie:

21 the movie — A review by Bootlegger, author of 200 Proof Blackjack

Comments by The Wizard of Odds

Top 10 Card Counting Mistakes in '21' The Movie


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