Wyndham’s pokie punters losing $250,000 a day

New data reveals almost $250,000 a day was lost on Wyndham’s 891 poker machines last year.

Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation figures reveal that a total of $90.15 million was lost on pokies in 2013, up from $74.61 million in 2012.

The municipality had the seventh-highest pokies loss rate in the state.

Brimbank had the highest rate of losses, with more than $128 million lost on its pokies last year.

Werribee Plaza Tavern accounted for most of Wyndham’s losses, with punters giving up almost $18 million at the venue.

The release of the figures comes as the council moves to restrict where gaming venues can be built as part of a strategy to reduce the impact of gambling on the city.

The council has asked Planning Minister Matthew Guy to appoint an independent panel to consider allowing it to ban gaming venues from activity centres and shopping strips.

HealthWest project manager James Dunne said Wyndham’s increasing losses showed problem gambling was on the rise.

He said there was a need to remove pokies from where people lived to make it more difficult for people to gamble.

“Research suggests that the location and ease that pokies can be accessed increases the risks of people experiencing gambling-related harm,” he said.

“These people might not be defined as problem gamblers, but they’re still likely to be experiencing many of the negative impacts of problem gambling, such as financial troubles, anxiety, stress and relationship issues.”

As reported by theWeekly, Monash University researcher Dr Charles Livingstone has called for $1 betting limits in outer suburbs. He said there was a need to reduce the size of gaming venues and restrict the amount of money people could gamble.