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Clubs’ claims come undone: Greens

Media Release
Richard Di Natale 21 Oct 2011

Greens’ gambling spokesperson, Senator Richard Di Natale, said today that yet another claim by Clubs Australia has been demolished.

“Clubs Australia have been caught out playing fast and loose with the truth about the cost of pokies reform,” said Senator Di Natale.

Within hours of the Greens announcing their policy of $1 bet limits on pokies, Clubs Australia claimed that it would cost $3 billion to implement.

“The truth is that the generous timeframe for phasing in the Greens policy would render the cost negligible. And unlike Clubs Australia, our costings are supported by the analysis of respected academics without a vested interest.”

Dr Charles Livingstone, a Senior academic at Monash University, said today that the most generous possible cost for implementing the Greens policy would be no more than $200 million, or less than 2 per cent of the $12 billion annual revenue from poker machines.

“$3 billion versus $200 million is a pretty giant leap,” said Senator Di Natale. “These guys exaggerate more than an online dating profile.

“Every poker machine in the country already supports a bet limit. Victoria has previously moved from $10 to $5 betting limits without any major problems or excessive costs.

“The idea that this is an expensive and radical change is demonstrably false. These sorts of claims are just fanciful.

“The clubs are obviously terrified by any effective policy that would see a reduction in the revenue they receive from the wallets of problem gamblers.

“That’s why the Greens policy is their nightmare scenario. It would work.”

Media contact: Andrew Blyberg 0457 901 600

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