The Victorian state government has introduced to parliament 12 more recommendations from the Royal Commission into Crown Melbourne, including mandatory pre-commitment on all electronic gaming machines and a daily AU$1,000 limit on the use of cash in the casino.
The reforms are aimed at tackling gambling related harm and money laundering risks in response to the findings of the Royal Commission, which deemed Crown unsuitable to hold a casino license but provided a two-year window under an independent monitor to return to suitability.
The new laws include mandatory pre-commitment for Australian residents on all electronic gaming machines at the casino and the use of cash being limited to AU$1,000 per 24 hours. Patrons will also be required to use casino-issued cards and show ID to gamble or receive winnings of more than $1,000.
The mandatory pre-commitment requirement will need to be in place for the casino’s EGMs by the end of 2023, the government said, while full reforms must be implemented no later than December 2025 “to allow for the development of technologies that do not currently exist.”
Other reforms will include making the casino’s board and senior management independent and accountable to the casino operator instead of a parent or holding company to ensure personal accountability, while the acquisition of more than a 5% stake in the operator will require approval by the Victorian Gambling and Casino Control Commission’s approval.
Crown will also be made to pay for the cost of regulating the casino via reintroduction of a supervision charge, while smoking will be banned in high roller rooms, aligning with Western Australia, South Australia, Tasmania and the ACT.
“This legislation is the next step in our national-leading reforms to ensure the disgraceful conduct uncovered by the Royal Commission will never happen again in Melbourne,” said Minister for Consumer Affairs, Gaming and Liquor Regulation, Melissa Horne.
“Some of the strongest protections in the world will now be in place at Melbourne’s Crown Casino – including mandatory pre-commitment.
“We’re getting on with holding Crown to account and implementing every one of the Royal Commission’s recommendations.”