Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Gaming reforms will mean more money for community groups

Gaming reforms will mean more money for community groups

Internal Affairs Minister Peter Dunne says changes to the gambling sector will see more money returned to communities, the tightening up of potential dishonest gaming activities and a reduction of red-tape.

“Large sums of money are at stake in the Class 4 sector and it is important to ensure, as far as possible, that the maximum amount of gaming machine funds is returned to the community,” says Mr Dunne.

The changes are contained in a new Gambling Amendment Bill (the No 3 Bill) and additions to the Gambling Amendment Bill (No 2) which Cabinet signed off last week. The changes also include new regulations approved by Cabinet last month enabled in part by the Gambling (Gambling Harm Reduction) Amendment
Act 2013.

“The No 3 Bill will give communities better information on grant-making decisions; strengthen provisions that deal with conflicts of interest and reduce the regulatory complexity and cost for gambling operators.

“These provisions help to ensure that gambling is undertaken to benefit the community and ensure every cent possible goes to worthy causes,” says Mr Dunne.

The Supplementary Order Paper to the Gambling Amendment Bill (No 2) provides clarification in key areas including the regulation and enforcement powers of the Department of Internal Affairs. The new regulations mean non-club gaming machine societies, which operate pokie machines in pubs and bars, will be required to distribute more of their gambling proceeds to the community.

The change will see the distribution of funds to the community by way of grants rise over a five year period, from the current minimum rate of return of 37.12 per cent of (GST-exclusive) gaming machine gross proceeds up to a minimum of 42 per cent.

“Current annual returns to the community are approximately $260 million. This figure could increase by a further $10 million because of the increase in the rate of return,” says Mr Dunne.

“The staggered increase will commence in the first financial year after the regulations come into force – 40 per cent in the first year, 41 per cent in the third financial year and 42 per cent in year five. It is anticipated that the new regulations will come into force around September 2014.”

There are currently 44 non-club societies and the average rate of return is close to 41 per cent so about half will have to make some adjustment to meet the new minimum. By staggering the increase, societies will have more time to adapt to the new requirements. Societies will also have to distribute 80 per cent of gaming machine net proceeds in the same regional council area in which the proceeds were generated.

Cabinet also gave the go-ahead to develop proposals to increase the transparency of grant decision-making and reform the system for paying the venues that host gaming machines. These changes are included in the No 3 Bill.

“Under the new transparency requirements societies will have to publish additional information that may include the purpose of a grant, the geographic location of grant recipients and whether a grant applicant is a local, regional or national organisation.

“On venue payments, I propose proceeding with the development of a ommission-based system because it will be simpler than the status quo and has the potential to reduce societies’ overall costs. The Department
will work with representatives of the Class 4 gambling sector to come up with the best solution,” says Mr Dunne.

The Gambling Amendment Bill (No 2) is before the committee of the whole House. The Gambling Amendment Bill (No 3) was introduced today.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Labour: Little Announces New Shadow Cabinet

“Labour had an impressive intake of fresh faces after last year’s election and newest MPs have now had a year to show what they’re made of. This reshuffle rewards hard work and continues my drive to renew our Caucus line up." More>>


Because Reasons: Someone Reckons David Seymour Is Politician Of The Year

Trans Tasman's 11th annual Roll Call has thrown a curve ball this year, ignoring the likes of John Key, Bill English, and Winston Peters to pick its politician of the year from the ranks of the new generation. More>>


Whaling: NZ Deeply Disappointed By Japan's Decision

“New Zealand is strongly opposed to whaling in the Southern Ocean. We call on Japan to take heed of the 2014 International Court of Justice decision and international scientific advice concerning their whaling activities.” More>>


Relevant Consents Gained: Government Unveils RMA Reform Package

The government has formally hauled down the flag on its attempts to alter the balance of environmental and economic priorities in the Resource Management Act, unveiling a 180-page Resource Legislation Amendment Bill containing reforms that have been largely endorsed by most political parties. More>>


Closing Schools And Such: Interim Redcliffs Decision Announced

“While the school’s board has argued that circumstances that could give rise to potential disruption are extremely unlikely, advice from technical experts has shown these concerns cannot be ruled out." More>>


Jane Kelsey: High Court Can’t Make Groser Provide TPPA Information Faster

‘This week we went back to court to challenge Trade Minister Groser’s stalling tactics over the release of information on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations, following a High Court order that he reconsider the Official Information Act request I made last January’, said University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey, first applicant in the case. More>>

Werewolf 58: No Climate For Change

The last time the global community tried to take collective action on climate change the world’s leaders finally came to agree that every not-too-onerous effort should be made to hold global warming to 2°C above the pre-industrial average. At Paris, all 150 participant countries nations will have put forward their pledges... On the information available, New Zealand's is the second weakest contribution of any nation in the developed world. More>>


Lambton Quay Shutdown: Object Was Made To Look Like Bomb

Police cordoned off part of Lambton Quay Wednesday afternoon, saying that a suspicious package had been found. Buildings were evacuated and buses were detoured. The army’s explosive ordnance disposal unit was brought to the Quay. More>>


Public Sector Still Shrinking: Record Low Number Of 'Backroom Bureaucrats'

Ongoing restraint in the public sector and a focus on better frontline services has seen a further reduction in the number of core Government employees, State Services Minister Paula Bennett says. More>>


Get More From Scoop



More RSS  RSS News AlertsNews Alerts
Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news