Increase or decrease in gaming machines

Increases

Licensees may apply to the Commissioner to increase the approved number of gaming machines under the gaming machine licence up to the maximum of 40.

Once an application to increase the approved number of machines has been granted, it does not mean that the licensee can operate additional machines. Licensee need to seek  to acquire additional gaming machine entitlements through one of the following three ways:

  • purchased through the approved trading scheme
  • under a contractual agreement with Club One (Subject to approval by the Commissioner); or
  • Where licences are held by a non-profit association (ie club or community hotel), entitlements can be transferred to another non-profit association under an agreement approved by the Commissioner to facilitate the merger or amalgamation of gaming machine operations for the benefit of both non-profit associations.

If a licensee wishes to purchase entitlements through the trading system, the licensee may need to obtain approval to increase the maximum number of gaming machines which are approved for the gaming venue before submitting any offers in a trading round.

For example –

  • Premises A has approval for a maximum of 32 gaming machines and holds 32 gaming machine entitlements. The licensee wishes to operate an additional five gaming machines. The licensee would need to apply and be granted approval for the maximum number of approved gaming machines to be increased to 37 before submitting an offer to purchase five entitlements in the trading round.
  • Premises B has approval for a maximum of 40 gaming machines and holds 28 gaming machine entitlements. The licensee wishes to operate an additional six gaming machines. As the licensee already  has approval for 40 gaming machines, an application to increase the approved numbers is not required. Therefore, the licensee may submit an offer to purchase the additional six entitlements or up to 12 entitlements in the trading round.

Where a non-profit association transfers entitlements to another non-profit association or where a venue is to operate machines in respect to entitlements transferred by Club One, the number of entitlements held by the licensee of the venue where the machines will be installed must not exceed the approved number at that premises.

For example-

  • Premises C currently has approval for a maximum of 20 gaming machines and holds 20 gaming machine entitlements. It intends to operate a further 10 gaming machines using entitlements acquired from Club One. The licensee of Premises C will be required to apply and be granted approval for the maximum number of approved gaming machines to be increased to 30 before acquiring the entitlements from Club One.

Enquiries about submitting an application to increase the number of gaming machines approved for a gaming venue can be made by contacting the CBS Customer Service Centre.

Applications may require advertising

Depending on the extent of the increase sought, the Commissioner may direct that the application be advertised and thus allow for objections to made to the application.

Social effect test

Depending on the extent of the increase sought, the Commissioner may exercise his discretion in determining the application, by having regard to the likely social effect that granting the increase in the number of approved machines may have on problem gambling in the local community. The Commissioner may also direct the applicant to provide additional information to assist in making a determination or require the applicant to conduct a Social Effect Inquiry.

The Independent Gambling Authority has prescribed by notice how applicants must conduct a Social Effect Inquiry. A copy of the notice is available on from the IGA website.

Usually an increase to the number of gaming machines installed at a premises will necessitate a change to the layout of the gaming area and/or a redefinition of the gaming area, there fore an application to redefine or vary the layout the gaming area may also be required.

Decreases

Licensees may apply to the Commissioner to decrease the number of gaming machines approved under the gaming machine licence.

Where a licensee holds entitlements equal to the approved number of machines and has installed all machines, a decrease will require one or more machines being removed from an approved gaming area. Therefore, an application will also be required to vary the layout of the gaming area. A redefinition of the gaming area may also be required depending on the extent of the change.

The application to decrease (and any associated application to vary layout or redefine area) will be granted effective from the date on which the machine or machines are removed from the gaming area and when the entitlements are sold or otherwise transferred.

Enquiries about submitting an application to decrease the number of gaming machines approved for a gaming venue can be made by contacting the CBS Customer Service Centre.