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2 December 2016

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In this edition of Gambits we update you on:

  • an e-booklet, Pokie proceeds - building strong communities, now available on our website
  • the latest version of the Australian/New Zealand National Gaming Machine Standard (NS16) that comes into force on Monday 5 December
  • the new Accounting Standards Framework.

Pokie proceeds - building strong communities

Pokie gambling often gets a bad press, including headlines about people who have stolen from family or employers to feed a gambling addiction.

The other side of the coin is the huge number of community organisations that benefit from gaming machine proceeds. In the 2015/16 financial year alone good causes received about $260 million in grants, an amount these groups would struggle to source elsewhere.

To better inform the public of the link between pokie gambling and financial help to New Zealand's communities, Internal Affairs has produced an online booklet called “Pokie Proceeds: Building Strong Communities.” It tells the stories of 10 organisations helped by pokie funding – why they applied for a grant, challenges they faced, what the money was put to and tips for other applicants.

The booklet aims to:
• improve the visibility and benefits of gaming machine grants
• provide an insight into grant recipient experiences 
• provide useful information to organisations seeking grants
• provide examples of sector-wide best practice and transparent processes.

Former Fair Go television journalist, Anna Kenna, wrote the stories selecting recipients from a range of organisations - big and small, national and local, sporting, health and the arts.

To improve knowledge and build organisations’ confidence in seeking funding, the booklet includes tips on how best to apply for pokie grants.

In turn, the gaming machine societies, which distribute funding, will benefit when applications come from a range of good causes and the forms are well filled-in.

Providing community funds is a key provision of the gambling legislation and the gambling regulatory framework seeks to balance the inherent tension between minimising harm and maximising benefit for the New Zealand public.

The e-booklet is hosted on the DIA website and the Department encourages gaming machine societies to link to it from their websites and grant application forms.

New Gaming Machine Standard comes into force

The latest version of the Australian/New Zealand National Gaming Machine Standard (NS16) has been gazetted and comes into force on Monday 5 December.

The standard was developed by a working group comprising representatives of Australian regulators, the Department, and the industry. The new standard does not affect gambling equipment and games that have already been approved for operation in New Zealand.

The standard is accompanied by the New Zealand appendix. The appendix makes technical changes to the main standard to bring the standard into line with New Zealand legislation. This does not contain the harm minimisation proposals that were withdrawn from consultation earlier this year.

Resulting changes have also been made to the Class 4 and casino linked jackpot standards.

Read the new and amended standards.

New accounting standards framework

As you may know, the External Reporting Board (XRB), a Crown Entity which sets accounting standards, has issued a new Accounting Standards Framework. We are currently working with Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CA ANZ) to ensure our templates are in line with this new framework, and expect we will change Part D of the Gaming Machine Account Summary form (GC7) and the forecast accounts sign-off for both Societies and Clubs.

The new framework covers both for-profit and public benefit entities (PBE) and is based on a multi-sector and multi-tier reporting framework. An entity’s eligibility to report under a particular tier will depend on a range of factors. Further information on the XRB Accounting Standards Framework can be found on the XRB website.

Class 4 operators continue to be responsible for ensuring their reporting is in line with the XRB’s Accounting Standards Framework. To assist Class 4 operators, we are working on guidance on the new framework and expect to be able to share this shortly. If you have any questions please email gambling.compliance@dia.govt.nz.