An advisory group set up to regulate bingo parlors voted yesterday to reject a proposal that would have transferred Stephen B. Paskind's bingo license, saying it didn't have the legal authority.
The Amusement License Commission voted, 6-0, to reject a sales package that would have transferred Paskind's license to a partnership among a Millersville real estate developer and four Baltimore lawyers. Commission members said they couldn't approve the transfer because Paskind has no license.
"We're saying any settlement offer is not within the commission's authority," said D. Boone Wayson, an Annapolis resident and bingo hall operator who proposed the motion to deny the permit transfer.
Paskind's bingo license was revoked in 1989, but he has been allowed to operate his Brooklyn Park bingo parlor by court order, as his appeal of the denial winds its way through the courts.
Anne Arundel Circuit Court Judge Bruce C. Williams heard arguments June 5 on the appeal of the license denial but has not made a decision.
The commission's vote, which comes after months of discussion, is not binding. However, it is a recommendation to Inspections and Permits Director Robert Dvorak, whose decision is due in the weeks ahead.
The county has been trying to shut down Paskind's business, Bingo World, since 1989, when county officials denied him a license renewal because of alleged ties to organized crime.
In recent months, federal prosecutors in U.S. District Court have won convictions of defendants identified as Paskind's associates, who have admitted funneling profits from gambling, loan-sharking, robbery and other enterprises through Bingo World.
The partnership that offered to buy the bingo permit, headed by developer Ernest J. Litty Jr., had agreed to pay Paskind $4.2 million at the rate of $60,000 a month.
Litty declined to comment after the vote. But he repeatedly tried to point out to commission members that the sales package was put together months ago specifically as a legal settlement to meet the county's goal of getting Paskind out of the bingo business.
Its defeat means that he stays in business, Litty said.