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DCC gambling policy 'one of worst'

15 December 2008

DUNEDIN, New Zealand -- As reported by the Otago Daily Times: "A 'laissez-faire approach' towards poker machines by southern local bodies has come at a cost to communities, according to the Problem Gambling Foundation.

"The Dunedin City Council has been singled out as having one of the worst gambling policies in the country, with other southern councils lagging behind their northern counterparts, foundation spokesman David Coom said.

"...Under the Gambling Act 2003, territorial local authorities are able to review gambling policy at least every three years.

"...Mr Coom said while it was pleasing the DCC might review its gambling policy a year earlier than it was legally obliged to, it should have implemented tougher restrictions on pokie venues sooner.

...With several authorities set to review their gambling policies in 2009, councils are urged to follow the example set by 12, mainly North Island, authorities and introduce "sinking lid policies", he said. This would result in no more licences being issued for non-casino gambling venues, and venues that close would lose their licences..."

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