As Prime Minister Julie Gillard reels from having hackers lay waste to her computer, another Australian MP is forging a path towards pokies reform and has set a deadline for the controversial head of state to make a decision.
ABC News reports that in an address to the National Press Club, Federal independent MP Andrew Wilkie outlined the plans and set a deadline for the pre-commitment technology to be rolled out, if at all.
“The agreement I did reach with Julia Gillard, which I will hold her to, is that there will be mandatory pre-commitment systems rolled out on every poker machine in the land commencing in 2014,” he said.
“The key milestone between now and then is that by budget 2012, the Federal Parliament is to have passed legislation to intervene in any state that would not cooperate with these reforms.”
The reform is being sought by Wilkie to limit the amount of problem gamblers in the country, the number currently standing at close to 95,000. They also account for 40% of the money lost on pokie machines in the country so represent a significant sector.
As we’ve reported extensively in the past no one’s really in favor of the plan save Wilkie and his government heavies with the various clubs and associations that offer pokies complaining that they will lose out heavily.
If the legislation makes it through, Clubs Australia have already made it known that they will launch a high court challenge against Mr Wilkie and the legislation. The best thing they might want to do for now will be to get hold of the hackers that got into Gillard’s PC and attempt to find some incriminating photos of that holiday. Eh Julie?