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Gambling Commission set to appoint Chief Executive Andrew Rhodes on permanent basis

Gambling Commission Interim Chief Executive Andrew Rhodes is to be appointed on a permanent basis, according to a report from the Guardian.

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Rhodes was appointed acting boss of the Commission in June 2021 following the resignation of Neil McArthur. He is now set to be appointed permanently, with his stricter approach on ‘recidivist behaviours’ understood to be a major reason behind the decision.

The Guardian reports that Rhodes’ tone has been well received within the Commission and in the UK Government, with Culture Minister Nadine Dorris expected to confirm his appointment immediately. Rhodes will reportedly earn a salary of £150,000 ($200,000).

He will oversee two significant moments in the history of the UK gambling industry; the government gambling review and the competition for the Fourth National Lottery Licence.

Rhodes previously worked as Director of Operations at the Department for Work and Pensions, having also served as COO of the Food Standards Agency. He previously served as COO of Swansea University, and Chair of the Community Trust at Swansea City Football Club.

The Interim Chief Executive signalled his intentions for the industry in his speech at the 2021 GambleAware conference last month, saying: “In terms of our role at the Gambling Commission, our job is to permit gambling. It’s to license gambling as long as that is consistent with the licensing objectives. Those objectives say that gambling must be fair and transparent, crime free and protect the vulnerable from harm.

“In an ideal world we would have little to do beyond licensing operators, but that's not the case, and we're nowhere near that at this point in time. There is still far too much harm from gambling as a result of too little compliance amongst too many operators who are not complying with our rules.”

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