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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2010 Week 07 Hansard (Thursday, 1 July 2010) . . Page.. 3224 ..


a gaming machine licensee to a stated entity for a stated purpose such as community contributions. The commission must be satisfied the contributions will contribute to or support the development of the community or raise the community’s, or part of the community’s, standard of living.

Categories of community contributions include charitable and social welfare, problem gambling, sport and recreation, non-profit activities and community infrastructure. All gaming machine licensees are required to record each community contribution made and to provide the commission with a copy of those records, together with a financial report for the financial year.

The commission gives the minister a report summarising the extent of the legislative compliance and analysing the level of community contributions by gaming machine licensees. This report is available on the commission’s website. The 2009-10 report will be available later this year.

The Gaming Machine Act 2004 requires clubs that are gaming machine licensees to make a minimum contribution of seven per cent of net gaming machine revenue to eligible community organisations. Other sorts of gaming machine licensees such as hotels and taverns must report their community contributions, but there is no minimum requirement.

As you can see, Mr Speaker, consistent with this government’s work in other areas, the commission’s work in the field of gaming and racing continues to be independent of government and of a high standard. The commission does very important work and I commend the investments in this budget to the Assembly.

I note again that last year the Canberra Liberals voted against funding for the commission as part of their doctrine of opposition for opposition’s sake. And yet they claim again in the course of this debate to be concerned about the regulation of gaming machines. We had hoped that this year would be different, that all members in this place would have voted in favour of funding for the commission and shown their support for a more sustainable and prosperous Canberra community, but again it would appear we will be disappointed.

MR SMYTH (Brindabella) (12.11 am): (Second speaking period taken). It is sad that the minister just cannot stand up and say, “I got it wrong.” Indeed, it was only two months ago that Mr Barr said, “I am not an automatic teller machine that simply says yes to every request I get from an industry.” Well, apparently the minister is now just that: the automatic teller machine of the ACT.

The minister opposed funding the racing industry properly. You will remember this, Mr Rattenbury, because we moved a motion, which the Greens voted for, to ask the minister to reconsider, and under pressure in this Assembly the minister buckled. That is the reality: there was pressure from the community, there was pressure from the industry and there was pressure from the Assembly.

The minister can get up and attempt to rewrite history as many times as he likes. I notice he actually did not use the line tonight about “opposition for opposition’s sake”. I am sure he used it at that time—the same as last week when we raised the very


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