Nillumbik Shire Council Candidate Responses - Alliance for Gambling Reform

Nillumbik Shire Council Candidate Responses

Candidate Responses

First Name

Last Name


Do you support reducing the opening hours of poker machine venues?

Do you support local governments having greater say on the granting or refusing applications for poker machines in their respective communities?

Do you support the banning of all sports gambling ads?

Will you pledge to not take any donations from venues or organisations that derive income from gambling interests?

Will you commit to reducing gambling harm in your LGA?


Which of the policies
referred to in our
Candidate Information Pack
do you support?
What is your position on poker machine policy?

David Sweeney Edendale I have been worried about the harm gambling does in Victoria since the 1990s. I support all your policies and am against poker machines. 
stuart sinclair Edendale  Reducing Pokie machines in local communities
Virginia Ruchel Sugarloaf Support all policies. I dislike poker machines and think they should not be allowed to exploit human weakness for private gain. 
Ben Ramcharan Sugarloaf Responding to the policy measures listedin the factsheet:
* I agree that we should avoi holding council events at gambling venues.
* I believe that witholding grants from venues that operate EGMs is a good way of putting pressure on them to change.
* I agree that poker machine use on council land should not be allowed and I believe we should support venues to transition away from using gambling to make money
* While I believe that anyone who has lost a significant amount of money during COVID should be eligible for a rates discount now, I agree that down the track, after giving businesses notice of this change, it could be beneficial to make them ineligible for rates discounts if they continue to operate EGMs
* The use of language is very important and I agree that we need to avoid language that stigmatises people. I will try to keep the phrases 'responsible gambling' and 'problem gambling' out of Council documents.
* It's too easy to assume that we don't have many poker machines in Nillumbik, which makes it all the more important to do a proper assessment of the social and economic impact they have here.
* I think community awareness is the key to solving most issues and Council can play a big role in this so I will support measuers to increase community awareness.
* We need better enforcement across the board in Nillumbik and I agree that gambling venues should be part of this.
* I believe councillors should use their position to advocate to state and federal governments on important issues and I agree that preventing gambling harm should be a part of this.
Catherine  Rutten Sugarloaf I support all three advocacy policies that you ask of local government. I would like to see poker machines banned altogether. 
Mary Clark Sugarloaf I have seen personally how destructive gambling and poker machines  are to people who innocently start and before long they are so addicted and in financial distress so quickly. It also takes years with help to disentangle themselves from poker machines and other forms of gambling. 
John Melocco Swipers Gully To a varying degree, I support all your policies. For example:
I support the banning of all sports gambling advertising before 9.00pm and at any live sports venue.
I believe that opening hours should be reduced to 3.00pm to 3.00am.
I always thought that when the gaming machines were introduced, they should've been limited to 'non for profit' community clubs. This would've provided some community oversight automatically.
Nerida Kirov Swipers Gully I feel that Gambling is a dangerous out of control pastime that contributes to many community/family problems
Michelle Peterson Swipers Gully All.  I don't believe that poker machines have a place in our local communities. 
Frances Eyre Swipers Gully When I was working at Nillumbik Shire Council as a Community Development Officer there was a lot of work being done around our Gambling Harm Minimisation Policy 2016 -2021. I fully support this policy.

In regards to - Which of the policies referred to in the candidate information pack that I support - I support them all but in particular State Government Advocacy 1) Address gambling harm as a public health issue. 
For some, the cycle starts before the gambling addiction and that can stem from poor mental health due to events such as, the pandemic, bush fires, high stress jobs or family circumstances. Working on the cause for some will be beneficial too.
Geoff Paine Wingrove I'm against the expansion of poker machines into the community (they're already doing enough damage).
Natalie Duffy Edendale I've read through your Federal, State & Local Government advocacy policies & agree with them all. It was also really concerning to see that in Nillumbik there is provision for up to 469 gambling machines. The damage from 90 is already too much.