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Betting and Gaming Council criticises Authorities choice to order closure of betting outlets and casinos in Lancashire

The Betting and Gaming Council has requested the Authorities to assume once more about closing betting outlets and casinos in Lancashire because the affect on covid instances shall be negligible however the financial harm shall be enormous.

The transfer comes after the Authorities positioned the area in Tier Three of its Covid-19 restrictions, which means it faces probably the most extreme lockdown measures.

It implies that round 200 betting outlets and three casinos, using 1,100 workers, should shut indefinitely.

The betting outlets affected pay £24m a 12 months in tax, plus £6.6m to horseracing by means of levy and media rights funds.

In the meantime, the casinos involved contribute £6m a 12 months in tax to the Treasury.

The announcement comes onerous on the heels of the Authorities’s choice to place the Liverpool Metropolis Area in Tier 3, which means the closure of 350 betting outlets and 6 casinos using a complete of two,300 individuals.

However not like in Merseyside, gyms and leisure centres in Lancashire shall be allowed to remain open – despite the fact that betting outlets and casinos are being ordered to shut.

Responding to the Authorities announcement, BGC chief govt Michael Dugher mentioned there was no proof that bookies and casinos – which have adopted all the anti-Covid public well being pointers launched for the reason that begin of the pandemic – had contributed to the unfold of the illness.

He additionally pressured that at a time of financial hardship, the Treasury might sick afford to overlook out on the tax income they supply.

Horseracing – which is already struggling because of the ban on spectators attending dwell sport – will even take a large monetary hit, he mentioned.

Mr Dugher mentioned: “We perceive the Authorities’s must sort out Covid, however they have to stability that with the necessity to defend jobs.

“From the start of the pandemic, betting outlets and casinos have performed their full function within the nationwide effort to sort out this virus.

“It’s subsequently vastly disappointing that as they’re beginning to get again on their ft once more, these venues in Merseyside and Lancashire have had the rug pulled from underneath them.

“And given the inconsistencies between the approaches in Liverpool and Lancashire on the subject of gyms and leisure centres, it gives the look that the individuals who make these choices don’t care about jobs in betting outlets and casinos.

“The easy truth is that there is no such thing as a proof that closing betting outlets and casinos will gradual the unfold of Covid-19 and any affect from their closure shall be negligible. They’ve adopted the general public well being steering to the letter, and in lots of instances have gone above and past what’s required of them.

“It implies that 3,400 hardworking workers in Merseyside and Lancashire should keep at residence as an alternative of producing the tax income that the Treasury so desperately wants.

“And horseracing, which receives hundreds of thousands of kilos yearly from betting outlets, will even see its income fall additional at a time when it’s already struggling due to the ban on spectators.

“It’s subsequently time for the Authorities to rethink the trail it’s now on.

“We hope that these making the choices will provide you with the mandatory monetary package deal to make sure these betting outlets and casinos have a long-term future. However the most effective plan of action stays permitting them to soundly maintain their doorways open and do their bit to assist the UK’s financial restoration.”

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