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Poker Machines - Agreement
Ms DAWKINS question to TREASURER, Mr GUTWEIN
Have you met with representatives from Federal Hotels and/or the Tasmanian Hotels Association to discuss the agreement which was flagged on the ABC this morning? Can you provide the House with any detail on those discussions? On behalf of Tasmanians so cruelly harmed by the proliferation of poker machines in pubs and clubs, will you now rule out locking in any arrangement with Federal Hotels and the AHA before the next state election?
Madam Speaker, I thank the member for that question. Let me be clear that there is no deal. We are not involved in any deal at all. I rule out in the strongest possible terms that the Government is involved in any deal at the moment.
In regard to the THA, I meet with them regularly. In regard to Federal, I could not tell you the last time I met with them but it is a long time ago. We proposed this inquiry, and I want to be clear that we are the first Government to do this. We proposed the inquiry. We have supported the inquiry. We put our policy position to that inquiry and we have asked for comment on it. We have asked for all comers to come and tell us what they think about the policy position we have put. I have made it perfectly clear that we will consider the report of the committee before finalising our position. Every party in this House has the opportunity before the election to finalise their positions.
Ms O'Connor - Ours is as clear as a bell.
Mr GUTWEIN - You support pokies as long as they are in the casinos.
Ms O'Connor - We want them out of Tasmania, but let's start with pubs and clubs.
Madam SPEAKER - Order.
Mr GUTWEIN - You support pokies as long as they are in the casinos - that is your policy.
Madam SPEAKER - Order, the Treasurer has the call.
Mr GUTWEIN - There is no deal with the Government. What the THA, the industry and Federal do is a matter for them. As the Premier said this morning, the inquiry is there for them to bring forward their positions, the same as it is for those who oppose the industry. That is what the inquiry is there for. There is no deal. The Government has not entertained any deal and, importantly, we will consider the report of the committee in respect of its views on our policy position before finalising our policy position before the election.