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The Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation (VCGLR) is the independent statutory authority that regulates Victoria's gambling and liquor industries.

Our vision is that Victorians and visitors enjoy safe and responsible gambling and liquor environments.
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Banner displaying electronic gaming machines

Changes to the Gambling Regulation Act for venue operators

On 30 November 2017 the Victorian Parliament passed the Gambling Regulation Amendment (Gaming Machine Arrangements) Act 2017. This will mean a number of changes for gaming venue operators.

It is the responsibility of venue operators and licensed staff to ensure they understand their obligations under the Act and to make the necessary arrangements to ensure they remain compliant.

Further details on how the changes will come into effect will be published on the VCGLR website as it becomes available. 

Below is a summary of the relevant changes and common questions. 

The Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation’s Second Reading speech to parliament also contains a summary of the changes contained in the Act.

Post-2022 entitlements
  • changes to the gaming machine entitlement framework to provide for the allocation of post 2022-entitlements, including the taxation applicable and the percentage of entitlements that may be held by club and hotel venue operators
Club entitlements and assignment agreements
  • an increase to the limit on the maximum number of entitlements that can be held by a club venue operator from 420 to 840
  • changes to allow a venue operator to assign entitlements to another venue operator for payment including in exchange for a share of gaming revenue
Cashless gaming
  • venue operators are prohibited from offering a non-cash gaming token or increasing the value of a non-cash gaming token as an inducement to gamble (for example, for free, at a discount or as part of a promotion).
  • the use of a credit card or credit facility to purchase tickets or transfer credits to a cashless card or account will be prohibited
  • a person will be prohibited from influencing or enticing a player to receive gaming machine winnings through a non-cash gaming token; and,
  • a new power to enable regulations to be made regarding cashless gaming.
Access to cash in a gaming venue
  • a $500 limit on withdrawals on any one debit or credit card in a gaming venue in a 24 hour period
  • an increase in the threshold for the payment of gaming machine winnings by cheque from $1000 to $2000. (amounts of $2000 or more can also be paid out via electronic fund transfer (EFT)).
  • any gaming machine winnings of $2000 or more paid via EFT must not be accessible for 24 hours
  • prohibiting the promotion or operation of cheque cashing services in gaming venues or on gaming venue property, including the cashing of cheques by venue operators (previously, venue operators could exchange cheques for cash to a person for up to $400 per day)
  • a new offence for venue operators who knowingly allow a cheque cashing service to advertise or operate on their premises
Responsible Gambling Codes of Conduct (Codes) and Self-Exclusion Programs (SEPs)
  • removal of the requirement for the VCGLR to approve Codes and SEPs. The Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation (the Minister) will have the power to issue a direction that prescribes the content, standards and requirements for Codes and the requirements for SEPs.
Standard conditions
  • the Minister will have the power to make standard venue conditions in relation to entitlements and gaming machine monitoring
When will the changes be implemented?

A number of these changes came into effect on 20 December 2017. These relate to

  • changes to the minimum amount that electronic gaming machine winnings must be paid out in cheque or via an electronic funds transfer
  • arrangements relating to post-2022 gaming machine entitlements
  • the ability for the Minister to make standard venue conditions
  • changes to allow for regulations to be made around the use of cashless gaming, and,
  • the creation of new offences relating to cashless gaming

Further details on the changes that came into effect on 20 December 2017 are available here.

The remainder of the changes to the Act must be implemented by September 2018. Some may be put into effect before this time and information on timing will be published on the VCGLR website when it is available.

Where can I find more information?

Further information is available via the links below.

Ministerial directions will also be required for a number of these changes to be implemented. These will provide further details about how arrangements will operate.

More information will be published on the VCGLR website as it is available.

I am not a venue operator. Do any of the changes impact me?

The majority of changes in the Amending Act relate to gaming venues so will impact on gaming venue operators and those working at gaming venues.

The changes regarding Codes and SEPs will also affect any person that is currently required to implement Codes and SEPs, including the wagering and betting licensee, registered bookmakers and the keno licensee.