Australia’s VGCCC Gaming Regulator Preparing to Crack the Whip

| May 30, 2022 10:32 am PDT
  • New legislation approved by the Victorian Parliament will give the newly appointed regulator greater powers.
  • The Victorian Gambling Casino and Control Commission (VGCCC) is set to crack down on what is perceived to be widespread poor practice in the Australian state. 
  • The VGCCC replaced the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation in November 2021.

The government of Victoria feels it necessary to impose stricter regulations on casino and gaming operators in the state. 

These new powers granted to the Victorian Gambling Casino and Control Commission are designed to propel existing casinos and gaming resorts to pull their socks up. This follows an eight-week probe launched by Victoria’s Royal Commission into the operating methods of Melbourne’s Crown Resorts. The operator was found to be below par in its adherence to compliance regulations and its overall “disgraceful” conduct.

Those using Australian online gambling sites from Victoria are unlikely to feel any tangible changes to how they can bet. But the same cannot be said for anyone visiting established casinos and in-person gaming facilities in the state.

Change is Imminent for Gaming Operators in Victoria

The Victorian government is cracking down on non-compliance through the recently-formed commission.

This means that just one breach of the gambling code is enough to land any operator in hot water. Previously, it would take several breaches of the code before disciplinary action could commence. This means that many of the operators in the state will be on high alert.

Melissa Horne, Minister for Gaming and Liquor Regulation, suggested that these new powers are just the stepping stone toward a complete overhaul of the existing status quo. 

“This important legislation will enhance compliance and enforcement powers and ensure reducing gambling harm is a key priority of the regulator. We’re continuing to hold Crown to account, and these changes will strengthen the already robust oversight of the casino operator.

“The legislation introduced today is an important step in implementing every one of the Royal Commission’s recommendations, with further reforms to be introduced later this year.”

Included in the new legislation are enhanced powers for the regulator to assess casino records and surveillance equipment. Casino employees will also be required to assist inspectors with their investigations. 

Victoria is not the only state to begin the motion of cracking down on gaming operators. The Queensland government recently announced stricter penalties for operators that misbehave

New Commission to Keep a Close Eye on Crown

The top brass at Crown Melbourne is aware that the establishment is on thin ice. 

In March 2022, New South Wales suspended Crown’s license in the region. This action was taken after a long and arduous investigation found evidence of multiple violations of the gambling code. Included in that evidence were breaches of anti-money laundering protocols.

In contrast, Victoria opted to hand down a two-year “probation” to Crown to give the operator time to get its act together. Suffice to say, the VGCCC has been established as a result of the company’s alleged malpractice, but it’s not the only operator in the crosshairs. 

This is an opportunity for gaming companies in the state to ensure that they are doing things right. If not, they could be hit with devastating penalties, and, if their offenses are deemed excessive, even shut down.

Fair practice and compliance should be at the forefront of any operator’s concerns in Victoria. Whether it’s a small pokies room or one of the top casino sites in Australia, the onus is on the company in charge to ensure that things are done the right way. 

Adam Haynes
Adam Haynes

Adam is a sports writer and tipster with a strong background in MMA, boxing, and combat sports.

When Adam isn't writing about those, as well as politics, rugby, and Gaelic Games, he can be found working on methods and strategies to beat the bookies.

For his troubles, Adam is a fan of Leinster Rugby, Glasgow Celtic, and trusting the process.

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