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Australian Hotels Add 2000 Poker Machines After 'Freeze' on Numbers

27 November 2000

AUSTRALIA – Nov. 27, 2000 – As reported by the Sydney Morning Herald: `` The number of poker machines in New South Wales has grown by 1,500 since the Carr Government imposed a moratorium on gaming machines six months ago.

``In the State's 1,500 registered clubs, numbers are down by 497, the first decrease since 1956, but among the State's 2,000 hotels there has been an increase of about 2000 machines.

``Many hotel outlets have not taken up their full allocation and can keep adding machines until they reach their licence limits - even with the cap in force.

``The 12-month freeze was imposed in March to slow the growth of poker machines in clubs - which had until then been acquiring poker machines at the rate of about 1,000 a month - and to give the Government time consider more permanent methods of curtailing gambling growth.

``…In March there were 75,256 machines in clubs, and 20,733 poker machines and 3,600 draw cards in hotels.

``On November 17 there were about 74,759 machines in clubs, and 22,449 poker machines and 3,927 draw cards in hotels.

``There are about 101,000 poker machines in NSW, half the machines in Australian and 4.5 per cent of the world total.

``Last year the Government earned $365 million from hotel poker machines and $530 million from machines in registered clubs as players farewelled $8.6 billion to the slots…"

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