SNOHOMISH, Wash. -- In two weeks, Snohomish City Council members expect to vote on a new ordinance that would allow senior citizens to continue playing nickel and dime card games at the local senior center.
Tuesday night, council discussed repealing the ban on social card games they passed in 2009.
“The fact that the senior center was affected by this was a complete unintended consequence,” said Snohomish City Councilwoman Lynn Schilaty.
The original ban set out to prevent the nefarious consequences council members believed would follow gambling profits.
“It’s not dollars,” said Lee Wright. “It’s a dime, a nickel.”
Wright and other seniors who play the weekly game believe someone snitched to the state gambling commission, which subsequently told them to cease the card games.
For the seniors, it meant losing a reason to leave their homes and fight loneliness.
“We’re gonna sit on our couches and die,” Wright said. “They’re gonna be our age one of these days too. What are they gonna do when they get our age? Nothing.”
They told city council members how important betting on the game is to their friendships, an opportunity to be competitive later in life.
“It isn’t, ‘Heck well, here we are at cards again,” Judi Mitchell said.
City council members will meet in two weeks and likely vote on an ordinance that will allow social card games at non-profit organizations.