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TEXAS AMUSEMENT MACHINE COMMISSION

TEXAS AMUSEMENT MACHINE COMMISSION. The Texas Vending Commission was established in 1971 to enforce the Vending Machine Regulatory Act of 1969. The commission was composed of nine members: three ex officio members (or their representatives)-the director of the Texas Department of Public Safety, the Consumer Credit Commissioner, and the attorney general-and six members appointed by the governor, with the concurrence of the Senate, for overlapping terms of six years. No more than three of the appointed members could be at the time of appointment, or have been at any other time, owners or operators of any coin­operated machine. An executive director was employed by the commission as its chief administrative officer. The commission was to collect an annual occupational tax levied on owners of coin­operated machines, license the operation of these machines, and make rules and regulations for the enforcement and collection of revenues. It could suspend licenses for a period of at least one year for violation of its rules. Regulations also required that owners of music, skill, or any pleasure coin­operated machines not have concurrent financial interests in, or unauthorized dealings with, businesses selling alcoholic beverages. The commission could initiate investigations and hearings and could take other necessary measures to enforce this prohibition, including the initiation of civil proceedings through the attorney general's office. The 1969 act was found unconstitutional, a decision upheld by the Supreme Court of Texas in June 1974. The appointed director claimed that unconstitutional provisions were deliberately written into the act. Even though its regulatory powers were wiped out by the court's decision, the commission was still retained. In 1978 it was renamed Texas Amusement Machine Commission and had twenty-two employees. In 1987 it was changed to a six person board with only three appointments by the governor and had twenty-five employees and a $780,000 budget. Although not due for sunset review until 1993, the commission was evidently abolished in 1988.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: Vertical Files, Barker Texas History Center, University of Texas at Austin (Vending Industry).

John G. Johnson

Citation

The following, adapted from the Chicago Manual of Style, 15th edition, is the preferred citation for this article.

John G. Johnson, "TEXAS AMUSEMENT MACHINE COMMISSION," Handbook of Texas Online (http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/mdtyp), accessed July 23, 2014. Uploaded on June 15, 2010. Published by the Texas State Historical Association.