April 19, 2021
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Club Tarneit in Wyndham has been approved by the Victorian Commission for Gaming and Liquor Regulation (VCGLR) to have 70 poker machines, despite submissions by several community groups and organisations warning of the potential for increased harm in the area.
This new venue by Werribee Football Club for 70 machines in Tarneit will have opening hours from 8AM-2AM and will take up to $8 million from the community every year. The Werribee Football Club already operates the Tigers Clubhouse in Hoppers Crossing, where the existing 85 machines take nearly $11 million every year from the community.
Club Tarneit would be located in the Tarneit Major Town Square, where other cafes, bars, restaurants, and retail shops are planned for development, and where a Bunnings is under construction. Tarneit Railway Station is behind the proposed venue site.
Alliance for Gambling Reform Chief Advocate, Rev Tim Costello said, “this is a blow to the community and the people of Wyndham who overwhelmingly opposed this application and at a time when Victorians can least afford it - it's difficult to fathom how this is possibly in the community interest.”
“This is an outrageous and inexplicable decision by the VCGLR, who have clearly dismissed and disregarded the submissions of the organisations and residents that are best placed to understand how this application will impact their community.”
Wyndham City Council also voted to participate in the hearing and oppose the application on behalf of its residents that strongly opposed the new machines being added to their community.
“We commend Wyndham Council for protecting their residents by fighting this application at the VCGLR. We understand they also wrote to the AFL on this matter earlier this year.”
Treasurer Tim Pallas, who is also the Member for Werribee, endorsed the application in a letter submitted with the applicants documents.
“That this venue will be operated by a VFL club and was endorsed by the Treasurer and local Member himself adds insult to injury, given the ALP committed to supporting clubs to exit gambling at the last election, and the AFL publicly committed to this in 2017.”
Wyndham Council voted last week to reject the planning permit for this venuel. The licensing application is conditional on the approval of the planning permit from Council. The Alliance has urged the council to continue its advocacy against this proposal as it goes to VCAT in June.
For media inquiries contact Rebecca Thorpe on [email protected] or 0491 209 436.