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“Enough is enough”: $2.7 billion in pokies losses prompt reform proposal

Five Melbourne mayors are taking their pokies protest to State Parliament today, in support of the Alliance for Gambling Reform.

Victorians put around $2.7 billion dollars a year into poker machines.

That’s $5136 a minute.

The Mayor of Moreland, John Kavanagh one of five mayors involved, told Neil Mitchell the figure is on track to be the largest loss since 2009.

“In Moreland people are losing $170,000 every day at 12 venues,” he said.

“We do harm minimisation for any product, we have speeding laws, drink driving laws, we limit the amount of damage that can be done.

“The Alliance is not saying ban poker machines, it’s saying get rid of the most dangerous aspects.

“We believe enough is enough, four months out from the election, we believe this should be front and centre.”

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The plan includes:

  • Reducing the hours of operation, to 10am-midnight
  • Limiting the maximum bet to $1, current amount is $2
  • Reducing the amount that can be withdrawn from ATMs within venues from $500 to $200