The members of the ACT Greens in Australia are progressing on the final decision regarding the maximum bet limits of the pokies currently operating at the recently renovated Canberra Casino. They indicated that they might agree to lower the bet limit per spin to A$2 and they are going to continue the discussion up until the debate which will help for the casino legislation, scheduled in the coming weeks.
At this time there is not a specific amount of money appointed which could be considered enough for reaching the agreement between the government and the ACT Greens. It could be recalled that the Cabinet was not able to come with an agreement good enough for all parties at the beginning of this year, and the bet limit issue was postponed to a later date. Shane Rattenbury is the leader of the Greens and back during the previous discussion he proposed that the bets are reduced to a figure between A$1 and the offered by the authorities A$5.
Now allegedly he has proposed a middle ground for the bet limit which amounts to A$2. This proposal is backed up by the research conducted by the Productivity Commission, which recently discovered that this amount of money will significantly help with the reducing of the amount of negative impact gambling has on the lives of people participating in gambling activities. The pokies which operate with an A$5 bet limit would not be supported by the minor coalition partner and the main objective is to reduce the harm they have on the players.
Manufacturers’ 5 Cents
The response of the manufacturers of such gaming machines was quick to come, stating that the lowering of the maximum bet to a smaller amount than the current A$10 would unfortunately not be possible since there are not many machines which are operating with such bet at the moment. This announcement has been made a couple of days ago and this further complicates the situation, because the ACT Green seems to agree with the A$2 bet limit.
At an earlier point in this year’s schedule of the Cabinet, there was a meeting where Mr. Rattenbury took the opposing position to the proposed by the Labor A$5 limit on bets. In response to their offer, the leader of the Greens opted for introducing amendments to the government’s bill in the course of a debate in the Assembly. At the moment, the authorities have given their approval to each casino venue to operate up to 200 pokie machines and 60 other fully-automated games. However, the so-called authorizations for these devices are purchased by the gaming facilities which own the largest number of licenses.
In the meantime, Mark Parton, opposition gaming spokesperson, stated that the Canberra Liberals supports the position that the operation of pokies should be exclusive to clubs and hotels, as this is the safest option for the players and the community.