‘Carefully drafted' gambling bill is unlikely to be changed

22 November 2004
‘Carefully drafted' gambling bill is unlikely to be changed

The Government is unlikely to make dramatic changes to its Gambling Bill, according to industry experts.

New gambling laws could create up to 85,000 jobs
There had been suggestions that the Government would be forced to water down the draft bill ahead of its second reading on 1 November in the face of opposition from MPs and religious groups. This would jeopardise the 85,000 jobs it claims would be created. Paul Korolkiewicz, a partner in the leisure practice at consultants KPMG, said: "I can't see them putting too many more restrictions on it - the bill has been drafted quite carefully. There's a clear need to do something with our out-of-date gambling laws. I expect it to proceed." Korolkiewicz pointed out that there was never a danger of the country being swamped by large, Las Vegas-style regional casinos, due to the costs of building them, a lack of demand, and the new powers given to local authorities to bar such developments. This last point is echoed by Neil Richmond of property agents Colliers Robert Barry. He predicted the bill would happen, but that in its current form it would lead to just eight of the largest "regional" casinos being built.
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