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Leases Forbid Sales : Lottery a Loser at Fox Hills Mall

October 13, 1985|BARBARA BAIRD and JIM SCHACHTER | Times Staff


The owners of the Fox Hills Mall have banned lottery ticket sales at all of its 139 stores, but other Westside malls are permitting ticket sales.

Tenants at Fox Hills Mall have been notified that their leases do not permit the sale of lottery tickets, according to Jonathan Alpert, assistant general manager.

But one tenant at Fox Hills is selling the tickets at his fast-food restaurant in defiance of the landlord's ruling, and the manager of a tobacco shop said his business has suffered because of the ban on ticket sales.

Fox Hills Mall is one of many shopping centers across the state that has prohibited the sale of the $1 tickets because of concerns that the lottery might attract loiterers, deter business and lead to a proliferation of signs.

Leading the drive is the San Diego-based Ernest W. Hahn Inc., which owns 26 shopping centers in California, including Fox Hills.

"We have a responsibility and desire to keep control of when and where things are sold and what is sold at our centers," said Hahn spokeswoman Kim Wenrick. "It really has nothing to do with whether anybody is for or against the lottery. It comes down to a contractual agreement and trying to maintain our own policies."

Hahn is considering a plan of leasing space in its malls to a tenant who would operate a mall information booth in exchange for the right to sell lottery tickets, she said.

Alpert said the idea is being considered at Fox Hills Mall because it would give the owners control over the ticket sales environment. "We want the operation to be clean," he said. "We don't want it to be a schlocky operation."

Meanwhile, officials at other Westside shopping centers said lottery ticket sales are proceeding smoothly.

"The people selling them were overwhelmed the first couple of days, but now everybody is getting used to it," said Eileen Bohen, marketing director at Century City Shopping Center. Lottery tickets are being sold at two locations in the shopping center, she said.

Lottery sales also are allowed at Santa Monica Place, the Westside Pavilion and the Beverly Center, officials at the malls said.

Harry Chorney, owner of Chorney's Burger N Things at Fox Hills Mall, said he plans to continue lottery ticket sales because he thinks the landlord's prohibition is unfair.

He said his customers are "100% pleased" that he is selling lottery tickets, which will raise money for the state's public education system. Chorney added that he has asked his attorney to reply to the letter from the landlord banning lottery sales.

Paul Durfee, manager of the Tinder Box at Fox Hills Mall, said he is disappointed that the landlord has banned ticket sales because he thinks that the lottery would bring in customers who might not otherwise visit the store.

"We are losing money (because of the ban), and we know it," he said. Durfee said another of the tobacco chain's stores in the Mall of Orange sold 4,000 lottery tickets in the first two days they were available.

"It's definitely hurting business (at the Fox Hills store)," he said.

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