Deadline to upgrade pokies is disgraceful

AFTER reading the letter from the South Tamworth Bowls Club’s chief executive officer last week, I also wanted to share my disappointment in the federal government’s pokies law. 

The deadline for clubs to install this pre-commitment technology is disgraceful. The government’s plans will see clubs close their doors simply because we can’t meet the legislation’s requirements by that deadline. 

On average our machines are about eight years old and 80 per cent of them are more than five years old, which means they can’t get a pre-commitment upgrade and will have to be replaced with brand new machines. 

Having older machines doesn’t bother our members, but we can’t afford to just replace them over a three- or four-year period. 

We’re a small club in a town of 3500 people. We’re not a big casino that has the money to pay for this technology. I have nothing against installing voluntary pre-commitment, but clubs can’t just click our fingers and make it happen! It takes money and time. 

The government won’t let us have the time we need to do it gradually and we don’t have the money to do it in time to meet the government’s demands. 

MARGARET MCGRATH

SECRETARY MANAGER

QUIRINDI RSL

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