Council opposes pokies bid

The City will
contest an application to increase the number of electronic gaming machines
(EGM) at a coastal venue.

Council last
night resolved to oppose Clifton Springs Golf Club’s bid to add a further 10
EGM, which would increase their total by 25 per cent to 50 EGMs.

A sum of
$30,000 has also been allocated, allowing the City to present a submission to
the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation (VCGLR) hearing.

The resolution
follows an assessment by the City, which found there would be net community
detriment if the application was approved.

Greater Geelong
has the most EGMs of any Victorian municipality (1274), hosting 300 more than
the second highest, Greater Dandenong (957). There were recorded losses of
$119.1 million in 2018-19.

has also objected to two other recent EGM applications and was represented at a
VCGLR hearing for both.

Belmont RSL application was approved by the VCGLR subject to conditions, while
the Geelong Polish Association’s bid was refused by the Commission.

Greater Geelong Mayor Stephanie Asher

is committed to reducing the level of harm from gambling within the
municipality. With
pockets of socio-economic disadvantage in Clifton Springs, an increase in
machines has the potential to create more problem gambling and negatively
impact the community.

Cr Pat Murnane, Chair, Community Health,
Wellbeing and Safety

have taken a strong stance on recent applications as we are concerned by the
link between higher density of machines and problem gambling. Our
best chance of influencing this application is to present a strong case through
our legal representative and an independent expert.

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