Tasmanian gambling reform is a sticking level between revenue and objective The Auditor

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The future of gambling in Tasmania has got interest groups going. The state government’s future gaming policy was released for comment in February last year. The policy proposed limiting the number of pokies in Tasmania to 2,350, creating individual licenses for hotels and clubs, allowing two “high roller” casino licenses, offering monitoring of the gaming industry and adjusting the distribution of winnings from poker machines . IN OTHER NEWS: Since 2003, part of the profit from Pokies and license fees has been donated to a Community Support Levy. The levy pool finances and distributes them to “non-profit organizations” that aim to minimize gambling damage. This proportion was 4 percent of gross monthly profit. It is suggested that it be changed from 4 percent across the board to 5 percent by pubs, 4 percent by clubs, and extending the payment to casinos which would add 3 percent. Currently, the law requires the government to sanction the social and economic impact of gambling every three years. The proposed legislation changes this period to 5 years. RELATED: Public Consultation on Gambling Legislation Changes Begins On Monday, contributions to the consultation paper were published showing where the parties concerned sat on the issue. Sixty-eight contributions were received on the proposed changes to gambling legislation. A total of 73.5 percent of the submissions endorsed the changes, but 46 submissions from hotel and club operators identified an issue that these operators satisfied with the changes. Twelve entries rejected the proposed government policy on grounds such as a lack of harm reduction, a lack of responsiveness to social and economic impacts, and the suggestion that all poker machine owners contribute 5 percent to the CSL. There were widespread concerns about the reform proposal to grant 20-year licenses to the machines, with debates about granting them permanently or setting a future date for their review. Nelson’s independent MLC Meg Webb submitted a comprehensive 22-page filing setting out its concerns and questions regarding the policy. Ms. Webb suggested that there is “no modeling or evidence of the likely social and economic impact of this licensing model and legal framework” for affected industries, the community and the economy. “The government has ignored the Tasmanian Liquor and Gaming Commission’s recommendations to minimize harm through best practices without justification. The government continues to ignore the TLGC’s evidence-based recommendations to minimize harm through best practices.” RELATED: Anglicare, TasCOSS, and Neighborhood Houses Bring a Focus on Harm Reduction for Game Reform The Empire Hotel in Queenstown endorsed the policy changes. The submission was written by the hotel’s parent company, Norton Hospitality Group. “This will ensure a fair and consistent playing field and create a safer and more sustainable gaming industry in Tasmania if the many challenges and limitations we are currently facing are addressed in the process,” they write. The group also said resources needed to support harm reduction for counseling providers. RELATED: More Slots, ATMs: What Launceston Pokies Pubs Expect From Gaming Reforms Glenorchy City Council, a region that injected $ 20 million into 270 poker machines in 2014-15, explained how the region has been affected by the pokies proliferation . “There are around 1,380 people in the town of Glenorchy who are addicted to some form of poker machine. There are fathers, mothers, sons and daughters – people whose addiction has serious consequences for their families, friends, loved ones and the community.” wrote. The council suggested removing pokies from all Tasmanian pubs and clubs. What do you think? Send us a letter to the editor:

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EXPLAINER

February 6, 2021 – 1:00 p.m.

The future of gambling in Tasmania has got interest groups going.

The state government’s future gaming policy was released for comment in February last year.

The policy proposed limiting the number of pokies in Tasmania to 2,350, creating individual licenses for hotels and clubs, allowing two “high roller” casino licenses, offering monitoring of the gaming industry and adjusting the distribution of winnings from poker machines .

Since 2003, part of the profit from pokies and license fees has been donated to a community support levy. The levy pool finances and distributes them to “non-profit organizations” that aim to minimize gambling damage. This proportion was 4 percent of gross monthly profit.

It is suggested that it be changed from 4 percent across the board to 5 percent by pubs, 4 percent by clubs, and extending the payment to casinos which would add 3 percent.

Currently, the law requires the government to sanction the social and economic impact of gambling every three years. The proposed legislation changes this period to 5 years.

Contributions to the consultation paper were published on Monday, showing where those affected were sitting on this issue.

Sixty-eight contributions were received on the proposed changes to gambling legislation.

A total of 73.5 percent of the submissions endorsed the changes, but 46 submissions from hotel and club operators identified an issue that these operators satisfied with the changes.

Twelve entries rejected the proposed government policy on grounds such as a lack of harm reduction, a lack of responsiveness to social and economic impacts, and the suggestion that all poker machine owners contribute 5 percent to the CSL.

There were widespread concerns about the reform proposal to grant 20-year licenses to the machines, with debates about granting them permanently or setting a future date for their review.

Nelson’s independent MLC Meg Webb submitted a comprehensive 22-page filing setting out its concerns and questions regarding the policy.

Independent MLC Meg Webb.  Image: file

Independent MLC Meg Webb. Image: file

Ms. Webb suggested that there is “no modeling or evidence of the likely social and economic impact of this licensing model and legal framework” for affected industries, the community and the economy.

“The government has ignored the Tasmanian Liquor and Gaming Commission’s recommendations to minimize harm through best practices without justification. The government continues to ignore the TLGC’s evidence-based recommendations to minimize harm through best practices.”

The Empire Hotel in Queenstown supported the policy changes. The submission was written by the hotel’s parent company, Norton Hospitality Group.

(Above) the year-round tavern, the Hotel Tasmania, the Commercial Hotel and (below) the Black Stallion Hotel and the Kings Meadows Hotel.  Pictures: Craig George

(Above) the year-round tavern, the Hotel Tasmania, the Commercial Hotel and (below) the Black Stallion Hotel and the Kings Meadows Hotel. Pictures: Craig George

“This will ensure a fair and consistent playing field and create a safer and more sustainable gaming industry in Tasmania if the many challenges and limitations we are currently facing are addressed in the process,” they write.

The group also said resources needed to support harm reduction for counseling providers.

Glenorchy City Council, a region that injected $ 20 million into 270 poker machines in 2014-15, explained how the region has been affected by the proliferation of pokies.

“There are around 1,380 people in the town of Glenorchy who are addicted to some form of poker machine. There are fathers, mothers, sons and daughters – people whose addiction has serious consequences for their families, friends, loved ones and the community.” wrote.

The council suggested removing pokies from all Tasmanian pubs and clubs.

What do you think? Send us a letter to the editor: