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Banks Backs Convention Centre For Auckland

Banks Backs Convention Centre For Auckland
Press Release by ACT Leader John Banks
Monday, May 13 2013

The Sky City Convention Centre proposal is a good deal for taxpayers and Auckland ratepayers and has my support, ACT Leader John Banks said today.

“Auckland is an international city and needs a world class convention venue. But running a convention centre is an economically tough and risky business,” Mr Banks said.

“Globally, taxpayer or ratepayer-owned convention centres often run at a substantial loss and attract on-going subsidies.

“It is essential that any convention centre proposal is taken forward by a seasoned operator that can compete in the highly competitive entertainment industry.

"It is also important that it is the operator that carries the risk, and not the taxpayer or Auckland ratepayer.

"The Sky City proposal satisfies both those requirements.

"I also support this deal because it does more to protect the few gamblers who cannot control their behaviour. I acknowledge there is only so much that can be done to protect people from themselves. In the end it’s up to individuals to take personal reasonability for their actions.
"However, the proposal introduces systems to allow data to be analysed for problem gamblers and ups the host responsibility monitoring to 24/7.

"I am satisfied that the regulatory concessions in the Convention Centre proposal are both necessary and reasonable in the circumstances. I will be supporting any necessary legislation," Mr Banks said.


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