The NSW Government has introduced legislation to the Parliament to save many clubs and help others expand their services to the local community, Liberal Member for Penrith Stuart Ayres said today.
“This will deliver a $285 million boost for registered clubs and community programs and services across the State, including the Penrith electorate, because our Gaming Machine Tax Amendment Bill will the reduce tax paid by registered clubs and introduces beneficial changes to the Club Community Support Scheme,” Mr Ayres said.
“Clubs are a vital part of our community and are part of our social fabric, so any help they get is a boost for all of us through better facilities, subsidised meals and entertainment, a place for social gatherings and added support to sporting and charity groups.
“Since Labor increased taxes, about 100 clubs in NSW have gone to the wall. We certainly don’t want that trend to continue under an O’Farrell Government.
“There are three and a half million members of the club movement in NSW who hold six and a half million memberships, so it is these people, their families, friends and fellow citizens who will all benefit from this lifeline to registered clubs”.
Mr Ayres said there were 10 clubs in the Penrith electorate who provide more than 800 local jobs and support a further 400 volunteers.Under this plan they’ll be paying less taxwhile increasing their contributions to community organisations by a further $1.78M.
“The new legislation makes our clubs better able to support their members, increase localemployment while contributing more to community sporting and welfare groups,” Mr Ayres said.
\”It effectively means an extra $1.78M will stay in Penrith rather than going into thegeneral revenues of the state government – an extra $1.78M for local sports teams, welfare groups and our returned serviceman.\”
The Minister for Hospitality, George Souris added: “The Liberals and Nationals made a key election commitment to help ensure the sustainability of the club industry to maintain and enhance their unique role in local communities in metropolitan, regional and rural NSW.
“This legislation delivers on that commitment by reducing the gaming machine tax payable by NSW clubs and introducing a new ClubGRANTS scheme.
“This is not a tax cut to poker machine operators, but a lifeline to the struggling registered club movement and its three and a half million members in NSW.
“Changes to gaming machine tax will return an estimated $200 million over the next four years to the club industry.
“From September 1, reduced gaming machine tax rates will be introduced, benefiting almost 500 clubs of all different sizes across the State.
“And a new ClubGRANTS Scheme will provide an estimated $85million in additional community support from registered clubs over the next four years.
“Not only does this Bill confirm our support for the club movement, it demonstrates our belief that registered clubs deserve real action that delivers tangible benefits,” Mr Souris said.