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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 (2017 Amending Act) which amended the Gambling Regulation Act 2003.

The 2017 Amending Act means 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 and to make the necessary arrangements to ensure they remain compliant.

Below is a summary of the relevant changes. 

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

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.

Please also note that there are further amendments to the Gambling Regulation Act 2003 current before Parliament (the Gambling Legislation Amendment Bill 2017). If this Bill is passed, it will result in further changes to the Act, including changes regarding advertisement of gambling products. Further information will be published on this page regarding as the Bill progresses through Parliament.

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. Information on these changes are available on the Department of Justice and Regulation’s website.
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
Access to cash in a gaming venue
  • venue operators must ensure that any EFTPOS facility does not allow more than $500 to be withdrawn on any one debit or credit card in an approved gaming venue in a 24 hour period;
  • venue operators must ensure that a person is not able to obtain cash from an EFTPOS facility unless the facility is operated by an employee of the venue operator including by entering the amount of funds to be obtained;
  • where accumulated credits on a gaming machine exceed $2000 (previously, $1000), they may not be paid out in cash and must be:
    • paid out by cheque; or
    • paid out via electronic funds transfer (but only if the transfer occurs in a way that means they are not available to the person for 24 hours after the transfer)
  • prohibiting the promotion or operation of cheque cashing services in gaming venues or on approved 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);
  • prohibiting venue operators who allow a cheque cashing service to publish advertising or operate on their premises
Cashless gaming
  • venue operators must not offer a non-cash gaming token, or offer to increase the value of a non-cash gaming token, as an inducement to gamble (for example, providing non-cash gaming tokens for free, at a discount or as part of a promotion);
  • venue operators must not allow patrons to purchase non-cash gaming tokens, or increase the value of a non-cash gaming token, by using a cash advance from a credit account;
  • a person will be prohibited from influencing or enticing a player to be paid out gaming machine winnings or accumulated credits through a non-cash gaming token; and
  • a new power to enable regulations to be made regarding gaming that involves non-cash gaming tokens.
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 directions concerning the content, standards and requirements for Codes and, for SEPs, the standards, requirements, monitoring and reporting that venue operators must meet.
Standard conditions
  • the Minister will have the power to make standard conditions in relation to entitlements, gaming machine monitoring and pre-commitment.

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 about entitlements, monitoring and pre-commitment; and
  • the offences, and ability for regulations to be made, about cashless gaming;

From 22 January 2018, the limit on the maximum number of entitlements that can be held by a club venue operator increased from 420 to 840.

Further information is available via the links below.

Ministerial directions will be required for a number of these changes to be implemented. These will provide further details about how arrangements will operate and more information will be published on the VCGLR website as it is available.

The majority of changes in the 2017 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.