The history of Queensland’s commercialised gambling industry is linked to European settlement. Initially, the law makers of Australian colonies tried to prohibit some forms of gambling. These attempts to eliminate gambling proved unpopular and ineffective – illegal gambling largely persisted.
As an alternative to total prohibition, laws were introduced to strictly regulate gambling activities – to ensure that, if gambling was going to occur, then the integrity of gambling providers and the fairness of gambling products could be ensured. Over the years the Queensland Gambling industry has increased significantly. There are now many legalised gambling products available including:-
- Poker machines in clubs, hotels and casinos
- Traditional casino table gambles at four casinos in Queensland
- Racing and sports betting (wagering) through TattsBet and on-course betting
- Lottery products such as Gold Lotto and instant win scratchies
- Minor games of chances such as raffles, Calcutta and promotions
Machine Gaming commenced in Clubs and Hotels/Taverns in Queensland on 11 February 1992 and 30 April 1992 respectively, pursuant to the Gaming Machine Act 1991.
The initial impetus for the Queensland Government to consider the legalisation of gaming machine operations was to address the deteriorating financial position of licensed clubs across the state.
The Government legislated through the Gaming Machine Act 1991 to permit gaming machines in licensed clubs and hotels.