New research by The Australia Institute Tasmania has found that the Tasmanian Liberal Party’s new gambling policy could increase taxes for pubs and clubs by around $10 million per year while cutting taxes for the state’s casinos by $9 million per year if Federal Group’s proposed rate is used as the benchmark.

“The Liberal policy proposes ‘benchmarking’ casino taxes to the interstate casino tax rate, but does not specify what that rate is”, says report author Bill Browne.

“The casinos would save about $11 million a year if casino taxes were set to the rate that Federal Group says is the benchmark.”

“That’s an overall saving of $9 million once their additional Community Support Levy obligations are taken into account.”

The report approximates what would happen if the casino tax rate was set to 11%, as proposed by poker machine monopoly holder Federal Group and the Tasmanian Hospitality Association. The current rate is 25.88%.

It takes into account the casinos’ new Community Support Levy obligations, which are part of the Liberal policy to double the levy’s size to nearly $9 million per year.

Taxpayers would also contribute an extra $1.7 million to the Community Support Levy to counter the costs of problem gambling.

“Any reduction in their tax rate will save casinos money at the expense of taxpayers – using the Federal Group rate would cut the casinos’ tax bill almost in half.” Bill Browne says.