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Women fighting to open adult video gaming arcade in Rome
ROME, N.Y. (WKTV) - Two local women have invested roughly $30,000 in their Rome business, but they're afraid to open the doors for fear they might be arrested.
Glorial Ceresoli and Wendy Unell want to open "Touch of Luck," an adult video gaming arcade, near the corner of Black River Boulevard and North James Street in the City of Rome. They have a receipt for a permit from the city that even has an issue date and expiration date for the permit.
However, the city has since refused to issue the permit, saying they don't have the authority to issue permits for the types of games the women want to bring to Rome.
"We offered to give them something, essentially telling them that their machines don't fall within their licensing provisions and that they can open at their own risk, if they were willing to give us a release on any claims that they currently have pending, but to this point, they've not been willing to give us that release," says First Assistant Rome Corporation Counsel Gerard Feeney.
The move would stop the women's current lawsuit to compel the city to issue a permit and protect the city from any further lawsuits stemming from the business.
Why not open without a permit, since one isn't needed?
Ceresoli has a letter from the Rome Deputy Police Chief saying he has not problem arresting her if he feels she opens an illegal business. Deputy Chief Kevin Simons said it's difficult to make a determination about whether the games are games of skill or chance when he and other local authorities haven't seen them.
Soon, they will; there is a May trial date in a local state supreme courtroom to determine the class of the games, and whether the city can issue a permit for them.
In the meantime, the women hope to one day make back their investment, and at the same time, improve the city's economy.
"The big thing was that you could get a gift card for your local restaurant, or Bailey's Karate, Cornuccopia," Unell said. "It involved the community and a lot of money could be brought back into the community instead of taking it elsewhere."