Prime Minister John Key is convinced that having Sky City build Auckland’s new $350 million convention centre is the best plan possible. However, not everyone is convinced that this is the best course of action, and a new report by researchers at the University of Auckland shows that the deal does not entirely abide by local gaming laws.
Dr. Peter Adams and Dr. Fiona Rossen have come forward to express their disappointment with the deal. They both believe that having Sky City receive 500 new poker machines is not in line with the Gambling Act, which is meant to ensure that gambling does not cause any harm. Knowing that poker machines are known to be the ‘drug of choice’ for gambling addicts, it seems irresponsible of John Key to give poker machines to the company.
“This occurred without reference to the public health purposes of the Gambling Act, thereby making a mockery of the years of effort put into its public health provision,” says Dr. Adams.
However, the deal is all but finalized. It seems that it will be carried out as John Key has planned, awarding Sky City Auckland with up to 500 new poker machines in return for the casino operator building the new multi-million dollar convention centre.