The Liquor & Gaming New South Wales (L&GNSW) has issued a strong warning against venues that are not following new laws in the Australian state regarding gambling-related signage. The ban on external gambling signage for venues in New South Wales went into effect on September 1st of this year and also includes interior signage that can be seen from outside of a building.
The ban covers a variety of signage, from fixed un-illuminated awning signs to digital video displays. Specific names such as VIP Room/Lounge, Golden Room/Lounge, Players’ Room/Lounge, and Prosperity Room/Lounge are prohibited, along with images of dragons, coins, and lightning motifs.
Venues that do not remove illegal signage face fines of up to AU$11,000 per offense. In October, L&GNSW stated that 99% of venues in the state were in compliance, but actions have been taken against those who have continued to display gambling-related signs. From December 1st, L&GNSW has promised to take escalated enforcement action against any venue with illegal signage as part of the third and final stage of the signage compliance program.
The regulatory body has already taken action against various venues suspected of attempting to circumvent the ban by using visual imagery similar to that used on electronic gaming machines. Minister for gaming and racing, David Harris, has made it clear that any attempts to bypass the ban will be met with an escalated enforcement response by the authorities.
In addition to the crackdown on gambling-related signage, NSW has implemented other responsible gambling measures, such as reducing the cash input limit in new poker machines from $5,000 to $500 and reducing the state-wide cap on gaming machine entitlements. There is now also a ban on political donations from gaming clubs and an independent panel to oversee a cashless gaming trial.
Moreover, a $100.0m funding injection has been granted to reduce gambling harm, with funding redirected from a fine imposed on Star Entertainment in October 2022. The government has also confirmed tax increases for land-based casinos, with changes to rebate play rates and non-rebate play on table and poker machines.
Overall, Liquor & Gaming New South Wales is determined to enforce the new gambling laws and strengthen responsible gambling measures in the state.