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Gaming Machines

Volume 884: debated on Thursday 23 January 1975

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asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he will seek to amend the Gaming Act 1968 on the licensing and siting of gaming machines in public houses in order to provide for a minimum rate of return to punters on an overall investment.

No. These machines are intended primarily for amusement. Charges for play and the value of prizes are strictly limited by Section 34 of the Gaming Act 1968 and we do not consider that further restrictions are necessary.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what regular investigations he makes into the working of the Gaming Act 1968 with regard to amusement-with-prizes machines commonly known as one-armed bandits in public houses.

The Gaming Board has a duty to keep under review the extent and character of gaming in Great Britain, but it has only limited powers in relation to premises not licensed under the Act which provide machines offering no more than amusements with prizes, and my right hon. Friend has no plans to extend these powers.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what advice he has received from the Gaming Board on regulating a minimum percentage payout for gaming machines.

The Gaming Board has informed me that it does not regard it as necessary to extend the statutory powers of the Secretary of State to regulate the minimum percentage payout beyond the machines now covered by Section 31 of the Gaming Act 1968.

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if the Gaming Board has any written agreement with clubs and casinos regarding jackpot prizes or percentage payouts in gaming machines and if any similar agreement exists with breweries.

I am informed that the Gaming Board has an understanding with the trade associations concerned that the minimum percentage payout of machines used under the terms of Section 31 of the Gaming Act for gaming in clubs licensed under the Act should be not less than 75 per cent. No comparable understanding exists with the breweries and is not thought necessary.