Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Act to be Amended


The Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Act is to be amended to enable the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Commission to regulate the sector more effectively, and protect stakeholders and consumers.
A Bill to amend the Act, has been tabled in the House of Representatives by Minister of Finance and the Public Service, Audley Shaw. The Act is also being amended consequent on the passage of a Casino Gaming Act, which has also been tabled in the House.
The Bill’s Memorandum of Objects and Reasons states that the amendments are based on recommendations from the Commission, to strengthen the regulatory framework, and the rules governing the operations of licensees to ensure against criminal influences.
The Commission also made recommendations regarding new gaming options and means by which wagering can be effected.
“These measures are expected to bolster the betting and gaming industry, by enabling licensees to respond rapidly and effectively to technological and consumer-led developments, which will enhance the contribution of the industry to the Jamaican economy, while protecting the interests of the public,” the Bill noted.
The provisions include: requiring applicants for a licence, permit, approval or authority in specified circumstances to satisfy the Commission that they are fit and proper persons; days on which business can be carried out and the operating hours of licensed premises; licensing of persons to manufacture and sell gaming machines; and licensing of lottery agents.
The Commission also took into consideration that, “the introduction of the bet winning tax on lottery winnings resulted in the migration of both vendors and purchasers from the formal lottery system to the illegal market.”

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