Newham Council resubmits FOBT proposals

By Edward Obeng
Newham Council has resubmitted proposals to slash the stakes on fixed odds betting terminals (FOBTs) from £100 to £2.

In November last year the council – backed by 93 local authorities – submitted the proposals, but they were rejected by the government earlier this year.

Just days after the government's decision it was revealed that Newham residents had lost £18,323,635 in the last year on FOBTs.

Matt,Zarb-Cousin from the Campaign for Fairer Gambling said: "These machines are the most addictive form of gambling."

He added: "£100 pounds a spin is way too much, it's not entertainment when its £100."

The resubmitted proposals came as a result of talks between the council and Local Government Association (LGA), which stated that the government should reconsider its decision.

The LGA will now hold talks with the government over the next six months.

The Association of British Bookmakers said: "It is difficult to understand the justification for the time and money councils are expending on this resubmission or why they might expect a different outcome."

In April this year, the government introduced a cap of £50 on unsupervised bets.

This allows staff to monitor behaviour and intervene if they recognise any sign of gambling problems.

The government has said that it will continue to monitor the effectiveness of controls already in place before making a decision.

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