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Australia: Secrecy surrounds casino tax rise

13 May 2009

AUSTRALIA -- As reported by The Age: "Premier John Brumby has refused to say whether he discussed the deal to increase the number of gaming tables at Crown Casino with Crown's executive chairman, James Packer, when the pair met at the Grand Prix.

"Negotiations for the deal - which will see taxes on poker machines at Crown rise from 22.25 per cent to 32.57 per cent over six years in exchange for 150 extra tables - began last year and would have been well under way by the Grand Prix in March.

"...Mr Brumby said anti-gambling campaigners had welcomed the increase in taxes, which will in part go towards replacing the $11 million hospitals and charity levy that is paid by Crown, Tabcorp and Tattersalls when it is abolished in 2011..."

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