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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2002 Week 5 Hansard (7 May) . . Page.. 1221 ..

Mr Stanhope: And KPMG-

MR QUINLAN: No, it is not KPMG.

Mr Stanhope: I read in the Canberra Times that it was KPMG.

MR QUINLAN: No. I will happily discuss it later. But at this point I am concerned. It has been said at times that the Labor government brought in a $344 million deficit in 1995-96. Let me say this much: anybody who makes that statement would be a downright liar because we were not in government in that year. Did you pick that up? The Liberals were in government. So anybody who makes that statement, unless that person is congenitally stupid and does not understand the first thing we are talking about, is a downright liar.

MR SMYTH: Mr Speaker, I have a supplementary question. Can the minister tell us when the Auditor-General's report on the commission of audit is to be finished?

MR QUINLAN: No, I am sorry, I cannot speak for the Auditor-General.

Sports bookmakers-credit betting

MS TUCKER: My question is to the minister responsible for gambling and racing, Mr Quinlan. Minister, you would be aware that I have on the notice paper a motion which in essence asks you to ensure that the Gambling and Racing Commission make it a priority to give attention to the regulations around credit provision by sports bookmakers, considering whether these rules are appropriate and whether there might be a role for the Office of Fair Trading in this. This motion, as you might recall, effectively replaced a disallowance motion on the same issue.

I understand from the office that following discussions of these two motions you contacted the Gambling and Racing Commission requesting that they make it a priority to look into sports bookmaking regulations to address the issue of credit, perhaps other things as well. Could you please tell the Assembly what you have asked the commission to do on the topic and, if there has been a response, what it was?

MR QUINLAN: I have primarily asked the Gambling and Racing Commission to provide information to assist us in the arm wrestle we are having with New South Wales. But the issue of credit betting was also brought up, and I have asked the commission to look at that. I did not put a time line on it, I am sorry. The problem is that bookmakers lay off with each other and lay off with the totalisator. In order to do that, it is necessary to have credit betting in place.

There is some problem with a blanket prohibition on credit betting. It is not a problem we can solve immediately. We might believe it is desirable that an individual punter should not be allowed to bet on credit. As I understand it from the inquiries I have made within the industry, credit betting happens very seldom and only with people who have a trusty record with bookmakers. There tends to be great difficulty at law in collecting on credit bets. The best thing I can do is get you a written response on the issue as soon as I can.

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