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30 August 2019

Gaming Machines Regulation 2019 comes into effect 1 September

As part of the NSW Government’s ongoing commitment to effective regulation of gaming machines, the Gaming Machines Regulation 2019 comes into effect on 1 September 2019.

It replaces the expiring Gaming Machines Regulation 2010 and can be found on the NSW Legislation website from 1 September.

The Regulation:

  • Provides the legislative and administrative framework for the operation of the Gaming Machines Act 2001.
  • Introduces minor administrative changes that enhance harm minimisation measures and player information, and remove unnecessary and repetitive clauses.
  • Introduces a fee unit structure for gaming-related licences and application fees.

Key changes coming into effect from 1 September:

Failure to display Sign 4G, which includes three pieces of information required by the Regulation, will be treated as a single offence. Previously the Regulation was unclear about whether it should be treated as one or three offences.

This change reflects current practices and streamlines the Regulation for venues operating gaming machines.

Due to clocks being available on gaming machines and mobile phones, venues are no longer required to hang clocks in their gaming areas.

This reflects evidence that clocks hung in gaming areas have little impact on harm minimisation.

Prescriptive player information and harm minimisation messages have been removed from the Regulation to allow the Independent Liquor & Gaming Authority (ILGA) to efficiently change and approve the content of messages in material like venue signage, notices and player information brochures.

This will ensure messages are fit for purpose and based on current research, industry best practice and player behaviour, to effectively give players information to make informed decisions and access help.

The requirement that gambling contact cards be bought from Liquor & Gaming NSW has also been removed, so ILGA can approve an easier process for getting the cards in the future.

Current messaging, signage and processes are to be kept in place until gaming machine operators are advised of any changes approved by ILGA.

From early 2020, gaming-related application and licence fees will automatically adjust each year in line with CPI to reflect annual rises in inflation. Including:

  • Gaming-related licences.
  • Application fees to increase gaming machine thresholds, and transfer or lease a gaming machine entitlement. Forms for hotels and clubs will be updated to reflect this change.

The fees will also be expressed in fee units. In 2019/20 each fee unit is worth $100.

These changes align the gaming machines fee structure with liquor fees and casino special employee licence fees, providing a consistent approach, certainty for industry and a contribution to processing costs.

A minimum levy will ensure industry is contributing appropriate funding to the Responsible Gambling Fund to deliver programs and initiatives that promote responsible gambling and help prevent and reduce gambling harms.

A levy of at least 5% of gaming machine lease payments or $1,000 per lease for each year the lease operates (whichever is higher), will be paid to the Responsible Gambling Fund.

More information about the gaming machine entitlements leasing scheme is available on our website.

The Regulation has been streamlined by removing references to processes and practices no longer used by the industry, such as:

  • Clauses relating to the operation of electronic card games (also known as approved amusement devices) by hotels and their conversion to gaming machine entitlements.
  • Scale of charges to provide player activity statements.
  • Exemptions for expiry of hardship gaming machine approvals.

Terminology has also been updated to reflect modern practices and processes.

More information

Our website will be updated to reflect these changes when the Gaming Machines Regulation 2019 comes into effect on 1 September.

In the meantime, if you have any questions please contact us.

About the public consultation

Liquor & Gaming NSW conducted a public consultation to finalise the Regulation. Find out more about the process, submissions received and minor changes made to the Regulation following the consultation on our website.