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Gambling Act: schools set to lose $3.8m

Hon Bill English - National Party Education Spokesman

29 November 2004

Gambling Act: schools set to lose $3.8m

National's Education spokesman, Bill English, says schools are poised to lose millions of dollars when new gaming laws come into effect. Figures released by the Charity Gaming Association show that in the three months to September 30, 700 schools received almost $3.8 million in grants from trusts and foundations by way of charity gaming machines.

These trusts have warned that the effects of the Gambling Act 2003 will greatly reduce the income generated by gaming machines.

"This, combined with the downturn of foreign fee-paying students, will put huge financial pressure on schools which are dependent on local funds to balance their books," says Mr English.

"Gaming funds have given schools the flexibility to provide extra-curricular activities and educational opportunities that aren't available through the Government's limited operations grants.

"Sports and cultural activities will be the first things to go at many schools when these changes bite. "The Education Minister either needs to sort out his funding structures or protect the outside funding that schools rely on," says Mr English.

ENDS


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