Jenny - Clean


THE BETTING industry in Australia is in danger of being taxed back into the dark ages of illegal SP bookies should the controversial new Punters’ Tax come into effect across Australia.

That’s the latest furphy being spread by opponents of the new Government tax (POC tax) that has the big off course corporate bookies on the back foot and fleeing.

Yet amazingly Fair Wagering Australia which purports to look after the interests of punters seems to support the off-course operators on the POC tax issue.

Its spokesman Richard Irvine, himself a punter but obviously not on the Corporates’ banned list to refuse or drastically cut bets, has raised the suggestion that the tax will see a rise in SP bookies.


You would have to query Irvine’s motive, and ask which side he is on. Who is he batting for?

Irvine says (albeit from left field):

‘In the distant past in Australia with literally thousands arrested every year in the 1930s as organised crime gangs took hold of what was an extremely profitable business.

‘And an excessive tax burden on bookies could prove the catalyst to a return to that SP era.



AND the outgoing Sportsbet CEO Cormac Barry says Governments should be vigilant in maintaining what he described as ‘the current healthy state that has become the status quo for the wagering industry’.

“That status quo can be jeopardised, and whether that is through a merger or whether that is through changes in tax through a Point of Consumption Tax or changes in regulation, they have to be conscious that we have a very vibrant and profitable industry that is supporting a great racing industry,” Barry said.

“That shouldn't be taken for granted, we could lose that.”

The arrogance of the man! Just who does he think he is?

And as for the reputation of his much maligned industry...


RACING survived and thrived long before Barry and his clan of corporate bookmakers arrived and totally changed, if not decimated, the way Australians enjoyed their racing.

Barry also raised concerns that because of the introduction of the Point Of Consumption Tax  bookies are leaving the Australian wagering market {James Packer selling his stake in CrownBet and William Hill selling up} which he says, ‘could have a significant impact to racing.’

Well, many would say that’s good news for the racing industry, Mr Barry. Good news.

And what about this: “The $200 or $300 million (expected revenue from POC taxes) is going to come out of the industry and go to the State Governments – well it has to come from somewhere.

“And the people who are going to pay are the racing industry or the punters because ultimately the wagering operators will work out a way to survive because that is what we are paid to do.”

Can you believe? But, wait there is more.

Barry also raised the issue of problem gambling as a major challenge for all wagering operators to deal with, and believes that there is still more to be done in this area by the industry.

It could be argued that the corporates contributed hugely to the problem by incessant advertising and ‘free bet’ gimmicks they plastered through the media targeting the small each-way bettors.

A senior executive of a big corporate once told this writer: ‘We prefer to have 1,000 $100 punters instead of 100 $1,000 punters’.

What Barry didn’t mention however is that the big corporates are still refusing to take bets from particular punters, which is illegal, and some are totally ignoring the recently introduced law against offering credit. Some are blatantly still canvassing offering credit, with evidence easily and readily obtainable.

They only bet the mugs or those they consider to be ‘uninformed’.

Frankly Australia really doesn’t need the wagering giants nor want them in spite of what Cormac Barry might mistakenly believe.

And if Richard Irvine continues to support them, he might consider a name change for his group.






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