Gaming overhaul in Victoria
By Vanessa Cavasinni, editor Australian Hotelier
Two major gaming policies have been amended in Victoria in the last week.
On Friday 7 July, the Andrews Government announced that the number of EGMs in Victoria will be frozen for the next 25 years.
“Not a single extra gaming machine will be allowed in Victoria for the next 25 years, helping limit gambling-related harm in our community,” stated Minister for Gaming and Liquor Regulation, Marlene Kairouz.
“These reforms also provide certainty to pubs, clubs and hotels across Victoria, and have been informed by an extensive review that included more than 200 public submissions.”
Gaming machine numbers will not be able to exceed 27,372 in the state, and no single venue can hold licenses for more than 105 EGMs.
The other reforms included in the review include:
- Giving venue operators the opportunity to acquire post-August 2022 entitlements up to the number of entitlements they held on 7 July 2017 through an administrative allocation process, rather than a competitive process.
- Adjusting the 50:50 rule to aid the allocation of unused club entitlements to hotels.
- Premium payments for entitlements will be determined based on a venue’s gaming revenue.
- Making current gaming machine taxation arrangements more progressive in nature.
The other significant reform to gaming licence regulation, will see the 10-year licence term increase to 20 years, with premium payments to be made once in 2022, and again in 2032. This reform has been welcomed by hotel operators, who have found the 10-year licence too short a term for such a significant investment.
The allocation process is expected to be finalised by the end of 2017.