Following a review of the Otorohanga District Class 4 Gambling Venue Policy, the council wishes to consult with the community on the effectiveness of the current ‘sinking lid policy’ and whether or not it is still an appropriate method of control for venues that operate gambling machines.
Otorohanga District Council's policy on stand alone Board (TAB) Venues has also been reviewed.
The decision on the Board Venue Policy was that it remains unchanged. The Department of Internal Affairs has advised that when no change is proposed to a gambling venue policy, that policy does not need to be notified for public consultation.
Otorohanga District Council initially adopted a Gambling Venue Policy in March 2004.
At that time there were five Class 4 (gambling machines) venues in Otorohanga District with a combined total of 45 machines.
In 2007, this policy was reviewed and confirmed without change. However, in 2010 Council proposed a policy change and following consultation and a public hearing, it was decided to adopt a ‘sinking lid policy’.
This policy was subsequently confirmed at the three yearly review in 2013.
The latest review of the Gambling Venue Policy confirmed the effectiveness of the ‘sinking lid policy’ which has reduced the number of venues to two: one in Kawhia and one in Otorohanga, with a total of 23 machines.
Councillors expressed opinions that the current policy may be suppressing business opportunities, venue choice for gamblers and reducing community funding opportunities.
It was resolved to notify a number of policy options for community consultation in order to gauge the public feeling about a possible increase in gambling venues and machines in Otorohanga District.
The same review confirmed that there would be no change to the Board (TAB) Venue Policy.
If you wish to discuss any aspect of the policy you can contact Andrew Loe, Environmental Services Manager on 07 873 4000.