The Victorian Government has granted a request from the Royal Commission into the Casino Operator and Licence to allow additional time and funding to complete its important work.
Commissioner Raymond Finkelstein wrote to the Acting Premier to request an extension to 15 October 2021 and an increase in the Commission’s funding from $10 million to $19.75 million.
Due to the seriousness of evidence produced through hearings and submissions to date, Commissioner Finkelstein is now investigating a wider range of matters.
This relates to the corporate culture of Crown Melbourne, gambling harm minimisation, and claims brought forward in evidence so far – including allegations Crown Melbourne underpaid casino tax.
Extending the timeframe of the Royal Commission will ensure the significant information provided regarding Crown Melbourne’s suitability to hold the casino licence is examined thoroughly and appropriately.
It will also allow time to prepare and examine the requested documents and for the Commission to undertake sufficient consultation with relevant and interested parties.
The Royal Commission was established in February to ensure that those who hold a casino licence in Victoria uphold the highest standards of probity and integrity. The original timeframe to complete this work was 1 August, as agreed to by the Commissioner.
The Government is ensuring the Royal Commission has the resources and time required to examine the evidence and determine if Crown is fit to hold a Victorian casino licence.
As stated by Acting Premier James Merlino
“We established this Royal Commission to get the answers we need about Crown – and this extension will ensure the scope of evidence provided so far is able to be thoroughly considered.”
As stated by Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation Melissa Horne
“The evidence we have seen coming out of the Royal Commission to date is significant – we’ll provide the Commissioner with the resources and time required to complete this important work as requested.”