Guide 1-4 Applying for a licence to install an EGM, or change the number of EGMs in a venue

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Part 4: What information does an applicant have to provide with their application for an EGM licence?

 

To apply for a licence to operate an EGM an applicant must apply using the VCGLR application form.

 

The following information must accompany an application:

1.Social and Economic Impact Assessment (SEIA) This is a document that outlines the likely impacts of the EGMs on the local community in terms of social and economic indicators.  A typical SEIA includes the following information:

  • a description of the proposal, the number of proposed EGMs, venue details including the operator’s commitment to responsible gambling
  • a profile of the municipality where the gaming machines are proposed to be installed including:
    • a demographic profile including population forecasts, age and sex distributions, average age, income levels, education, housing status and costs, employment, Socio- Economic Index of Disadvantage (SEIFA), available through the VCGLR.
    • EGM catchment area
    • Trade Area Analysis (usually provided by the Applicant, this includes an analysis of the proposed area where the trade for EGMs will be drawn). This can differ from the Council's view of the likely catchment.
    • Current and future provision of EGMs (EGM numbers and density figures for Local Government Area)
    • Incidence of problem gambling (any relevant data including indicators of community vulnerability to problem gambling)

 

Many SEIA also consider the more localised impact on the catchment area. View Fact Sheet 11 Tips for conducting a social and economic impact assessment (SEIA) of a planning permit, or licence application for EGMs. See also the Social and Economic Impact Assessment for Electronic Gaming Machines website.

2. Any reports or documents the applicant intends to rely on at the public hearing.

 

Other material also considered by the VCGLR may include an assessment of potential gambling expenditure and a land use planning assessment of the application. The land use planning assessment is explained briefly below, and the gaming expenditure analysis is discussed in point 4.

 

Land Use Planning Assessment A land use planning assessment provides an analysis of the site and context of the proposed application in relation to local statutory planning regulations. It would consider whether the use for gaming should be approved or whether the zoning or surrounding uses prohibit EGMs. For more information view Guide 2, Part 3: What information does the applicant have to provide with their application for an EGM permit?

 

3. Community Benefit Statement (clubs only) a requirement of the Gambling Regulation Act 2003 is that clubs (not hotels) wishing to install EGMs must provide an annual audited statement which is known as a Community Benefit Statement (CBS).  Clubs are required to direct a percentage (8.3%) of their gaming income towards philanthropic benevolent sporting or recreational purposes (Brown H, 2010, A Review of Gaming Related Issues, City of Greater Dandenong). The community benefit statement therefore reflects how this money is directed to benefit the community.

 

“The requirement for these statements stems from the difference in the level of “tax levied upon hotels and clubs. While hotels pay 33% of their gambling revenue to the state government - of which 8.3% is deducted to the Community Support Fund - clubs pay only 24.3% of their gambling revenue as tax, as it is expected that they will direct 8.3% of their gambling funds at least, to activities of benefit to the community. Community Benefits Statements are intended to verify that such funds have indeed been directed to community projects. (Brown, 2010 A Review of Gaming Related Issues, City of Greater Dandenong, p. 25).

 

4.Gaming Expenditure Analysis -  All expenditure figures are published on the VCGLR’s website and an application can be analysed based on municipal wide expenditure data. A Gaming Expenditure Assessment analyses the income anticipated from the proposed gaming machines based on anticipated expenditure per machine per year. . Councils can perform an analysis of expenditure within an LGA using statistics on the VCGLR website. The VCGLR publishes figures on EGM expenditure across the state and breaks down the data into total net expenditure, average spend per adult over 18 years of age and the number of EGMs per 1000 adults in each municipality. Council submissions related to an application often provide such data for their own LGA and comparable LGAs as a way of illustrating the extent of current expenditure in the municipality. Councils should consider engaging an expert witness when making expenditure predictions due to the specialised nature of the work.

 

5. All witness statements. All evidence to be heard at a hearing must be accompanied by a written report which is submitted to the VCGR for circulation to the other party 10 working days before the hearing.

 

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