Gambling and Board Venue Policy Review

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Gambling and Board Venue Policy review

The council passed the 'Class IV Gambling and Board Venue Policy' on 27th July 2017

Minutes from the meeting and details of the final decision can be found here


In 2004, all local authorities were required to adopt a policy about gambling machines (or pokie machines) in their districts as a requirement of the Gambling Act 2003 (the ‘Gambling Act’) as well as a Policy on TAB Board venues under the Racing Act 2003 (the ‘Racing Act’).

Rotorua Lakes Council (‘Council’) adopted a policy about gambling machines (or pokie machines) and TAB Board Venues in 2004, which is currently the

The council passed the 'Class IV Gambling and Board Venue Policy' on 27th July 2017

Minutes from the meeting and details of the final decision can be found here


In 2004, all local authorities were required to adopt a policy about gambling machines (or pokie machines) in their districts as a requirement of the Gambling Act 2003 (the ‘Gambling Act’) as well as a Policy on TAB Board venues under the Racing Act 2003 (the ‘Racing Act’).

Rotorua Lakes Council (‘Council’) adopted a policy about gambling machines (or pokie machines) and TAB Board Venues in 2004, which is currently the ‘Class IV Gambling and Board Venue Policy 2011’ (‘RLC Gambling Policy’).

The RLC Gambling Policy is made under the Gambling Act 2003 and the Racing Act 2003. In particular, the RLC Gambling Policy:

  • establishes a ‘cap’ of 380 on the number of gambling machines in the district;
  • sets the number of gambling machines allowed per venue (in line with the Gambling Act);
  • allows for the relocation of gambling machines between venues when a venue closes; and
  • establishes certain criteria and conditions about where ‘gambling machine’ venues and TAB Board venues may establish in the Central Business District, other commercial zones and other locations in the district.

As at March 2017 there was one TAB Board Venue in the district, and 26 Class 4 gambling venues licenced to contain 389 gambling machines.

Although the RLC Gambling Policy had the effect of significantly reducing the number of venues and gambling machines in its first five years of operation, the reductions have been far less in the last five years. Indeed, the number of venues and gambling machines has remained at around the same level since 2010. The actual number of gambling machines is currently 382, which is still above the cap of 380 set in 2004.

The RLC Gambling Policy must be occasionally reviewed. This requires consideration of the social impact of gambling in the district. However, in addition to this, the Council commissioned an independent community survey.

The Statement of Proposal and supporting documents include: