Sunshine Coast Casino – Campaign Update

With your help and support I have been fighting proposals for a casino on the Sunshine Coast since the Council’s engagement with the idea first became public last year.  

At the end of last year our campaign had an important win when Queensland Minister Kate Jones stated that there would be no casino licence for the Sunshine Coast for now. However, I intend to continue our campaign until the Mayor himself rules out pursuing the project further.

As we begin 2019, there are two developments that you should be aware of. Throughout the year, I will continue to update you on any further progress. If you have any questions, or you would like any further information on the below, please contact me on 5493 5556 or andrew.wallace.mp@aph.gov.au.

Survey proves the Sunshine Coast rejects a Casino

If ever there was any doubt, in December we finally demonstrated once and for all that the Sunshine Coast community utterly rejects allowing a casino to be built in our region. As reported in the Sunshine Coast Daily, we now have robust ReachTel data that tells us exactly what our region thinks on this issue.

A representative sample of 635 people living on the Coast answered ReachTel’s survey. 75.8% said that they would not support a casino, even if it included a new convention and exhibition centre. 47.8% said that they would be worried about the impact of gambling on their family if a casino opened, and 64.7% said that they would not visit a casino on the Coast.

These results represent an emphatic “No” from our community to any Casino proposal and demonstrate yet again why it is so important that we continue to fight.

Revealing Right to Information Process nearing completion

If ever there was any doubt, in December we finally demonstrated once and for all that the Sunshine Coast community utterly rejects allowing a casino to be built in our region. As reported in the Sunshine Coast Daily, we now have robust ReachTel data that tells us exactly what our region thinks on this issue.

A representative sample of 635 people living on the Coast answered ReachTel’s survey. 75.8% said that they would not support a casino, even if it included a new convention and exhibition centre. 47.8% said that they would be worried about the impact of gambling on their family if a casino opened, and 64.7% said that they would not visit a casino on the Coast.

These results represent an emphatic “No” from our community to any Casino proposal and demonstrate yet again why it is so important that we continue to fight.

In May last year I made a Right to Information (RTI) request to the Sunshine Coast Council for all of their recent documents relating to the establishment of a casino on the Sunshine Coast. Eventually, Council released to me more than 450 pages of documents which demonstrate that the prospect has been seriously discussed and promoted by representatives of Council and the State Government.

The RTI request showed how council officers have gathered information which would support a casino bid for the Sunshine Coast, how the Maroochydore CBD developer SunCentral prepared a brochure for potential investors in a casino on the Coast, and how the Mayor wrote repeatedly to State Government Ministers asking for a casino licence for the Coast to be considered.

You can read the Sunshine Coast Daily’s coverage of the RTI request here.

However, many pages were blacked out, or removed from the documents provided to me. I have appealed to the Information Commissioner to have those redacted sections released to me and the Commissioner has made a positive initial judgment. There are further stages to go through, but I am hopeful that I will receive those additional pages by the end of February. When I do, I will update you on what extra detail they bring to light.  

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