The Independent Member for Denison, Andrew Wilkie, has called on the Liberal Party to immediately come clean about the donations it’s received from the Federal Group, particularly because Federal is set to pocket an enormous $18m windfall if the Liberals win government.
“The public have a right to know how much the poker machine industry is pouring into the Liberals’ state election campaign,” Mr Wilkie said.
“No one is buying the claim that the Premier simply doesn’t know whether or not there’s been any donations.”
“This is especially important because if the Liberals win government, in addition to having poker machines entrenched in hotels and clubs for decades, the Federal Group is set to pocket $18m when direct licensing is granted to venues.”
The figure was revealed in evidence given by the Federal Group to the Joint Select Committee on Future Gaming Markets, where they claimed that under the direct licensing model, “the average value of a Tasmanian hotel or club … would improve by about $1.5 million”.
The Federal Group directly owns 12 poker machine venues in Tasmania.
“Don’t let the Liberal Party fool you by claiming that they’re breaking Federal’s monopoly so there’s nothing to worry about,” Mr Wilkie said.
“The fact is that Federal is set to directly benefit to the tune of $18m from the direct licensing model, in addition to keeping poker machines in their hotels and clubs.”
“Make no mistake - under the Liberals’ poker machine policy, the pokies barons will get richer and the community will get poorer.”