No Wellington casino

December 14th, 2009 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

The Dom Post reports:

A developer’s plan to build a casino in Wellington appears doomed after Internal Affairs Minister ruled out a law change required for it to proceed.

Backers of the proposed billion-dollar project in Shelly Bay – which also includes a luxury apartment block and a gondola at the prime harbourside site – need the previous government’s moratorium on new casinos lifted if the centrepiece of the development is to go ahead.

But Mr Guy, who has responsibility for , said changing the law was not in the pipeline and, even if it was, doing so would be a lengthy process.

“Any change to the law would be a decision for the Cabinet and caucus and would require extensive discussion with the wider community,” he said.

“At this stage, the Government has no plans to change the law.”

That’s a real shame. It is bizarre that the Government thinks Wellingtonians can not be trusted to have a casino.

I don’t think there should be any limit on the number of casinos. There should be rules around how they operate, but I don’t see it as the role of the state to determine which cities or towns are allowed one, and which are not.

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43 Responses to “No Wellington casino”

  1. Le Grande Fromage (145 comments) says:

    No casino in Wellington? Tell that to the last Labour administration who gambled away our future.

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  2. Manolo (13,746 comments) says:

    Tell me the difference between socialist Labour and neo-socialist National Party governments? None, zero, zilch.

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  3. petal (706 comments) says:

    “That’s a real shame. It is bizarre that the Government thinks Wellingtonians can not be trusted to have a casino.”

    heh. My thoughts also: Parliament seems like the biggest Lotto Shop/Casino in the country!

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  4. Lindsay (148 comments) says:

    Private enterprise must be increasingly and bitterly disappointed in National.

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  5. XChequer (298 comments) says:

    Lets see now.

    Politicians. Civil Servants. Booze. Gambling. Close proximity. Wellington.

    Sounds like the recipe for the famous Disaster Cocktail.

    Just add ice and stir.

    XChequer

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  6. pentwig (240 comments) says:

    Perhaps the parlimentarians do not trust themselves from the temptation when in Wellington.

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  7. Will de Cleene (485 comments) says:

    Wellington also has a heap of embassies, and don’t forget the cruise ships. You can’t expect them all to be satisfied with cafes and Sky TV. What better way to boost the local economy than to have a casino to entertain them? Have a dress code, limit the number of pokie machines, create jobs.

    http://gonzofreakpower.blogspot.com/2009/05/casino-capitale.html

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  8. big bruv (13,884 comments) says:

    No limits on Casino’s, no limits on Pokie machines and no limits on gambling at all.

    If fools and losers want to part with their money then so be it.

    [DPF: Hey we agree on something :-)]

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  9. unaha-closp (1,164 comments) says:

    There should be rules around how they operate, but I don’t see it as the role of the state to determine which cities or towns are allowed one, and which are not.

    There should be a minimum of 3 casinos per market place to at least provide a simulation of competition. Otherwise each consent just looks like the successful bid has greased the right palms to win.

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  10. Johnboy (16,483 comments) says:

    What the hell is the difference between an up market casino and all the pokies in grotty little pubs designed to part the truly stupid from their benefit money?

    If the pollies were truly concerned with gambling they would shut them down. I suspect it is more to do with the vested interests who run the Auckland and Christchurch casinos lobbying their mates in parliament.

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  11. malcolm (1,952 comments) says:

    Excellent decision. It’s simply criminal that we let private casino companies install such large areas of utterly hideous carpet. It’s an affront taste and all that is good and decent.

    Where was the gondola going to go? Mt Crawford Prison?

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  12. Jack5 (5,137 comments) says:

    More casinos, just what’s needed to help Aussie and Asian crooks launder their crime money.

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  13. Murray (8,847 comments) says:

    Think of all the tourists we’re losing who would otherwise have flown half war round the world rather than go to the cassinos an hour away from where they live.

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  14. trout (939 comments) says:

    Casinos are nothing more than another device invented by the well off to extract money from the poor. That they are a tourist attraction is rubbish; Sky City does not attract tourists; the clientelle are mainly poor people, Asians, and gambling addicts. It is a haven for crims meeting, dealing, and money laundering. Visit there sometime and experience the sleaze.

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  15. BlairM (2,339 comments) says:

    The only laws surrounding gambling should be those which require a clear and accurate display of the odds of a game, and recourse to dispute a result independently. Further regulation allows a cartel situation which lengthens odds at the expense of punters and simply encourages casinos and pokie bars to profit at the expense of gambling addicts. More competition leads to shorter odds and more choice, which means punters are likely to lose less money, or at least lose it less quickly.

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  16. chfr (126 comments) says:

    I could not agree more Trout. One of the most depressing sights I have seen was at a conference held at Sky City casino. I was walking into the conference venue and looked into the cassino at 8am. There were about 50 people in there all looking desperate.

    I for one don’t find them appealing at all and would wonder why a city feels the need for one.

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  17. Scott (1,792 comments) says:

    Totally agree with Trout and chfr. Casinos are incredibly addictive and serve only to encourage the vice of gambling.Apparently the addiction is stronger even than alcoholism.

    I wish liberals would actually care more about people and the harm their policies and ideas cause.

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  18. Neil (586 comments) says:

    Almost like having an Adagio every night of the week.
    Having a casino is the mark of a real tolerant and extra cool city.
    Bunkum to your casino. However I do agree that freedom of choice would be better rather than nanny regulations.

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  19. andrei (2,639 comments) says:

    Well look who was behind the development of the gambling industry and casinos in the USA – Meyer Lansky which probably tells you everything you need to know about casinos.

    Sad places of false glamor – we would all be better off without them

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  20. getstaffed (9,186 comments) says:

    I too agree with Trout, chfr, andrei and Scott.

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  21. OTGO (548 comments) says:

    The casinos in NZ are Clayton’s casinos. They are merely places that people go to gamble. If you want to see real casinos go to Vegas. The Bellagio, Caesers, The Venetian. They are casinos!

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  22. unaha-closp (1,164 comments) says:

    The casinos in NZ are Clayton’s casinos. They are merely places that people go to gamble. If you want to see real casinos go to Vegas. The Bellagio, Caesers, The Venetian. They are casinos!

    Or Macau, which is bigger than Vegas and closer.

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  23. unaha-closp (1,164 comments) says:

    It is a haven for crims meeting, dealing, and money laundering. Visit there sometime and experience the sleaze.

    I’m a regular.

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  24. RRM (9,917 comments) says:

    No! The poor, simple people should be encouraged to piss away what little they have at every opportunity!

    Shame on you, nanny state, for restricting the RIGHTS of Investors, developers etc help these people f*ck their lives up if they are so foolish as to do so.

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  25. big bruv (13,884 comments) says:

    RRM

    Why do you think that ‘poor’ or ‘simple’ people need you to run their lives for them?

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  26. big bruv (13,884 comments) says:

    DPF

    ‘[DPF: Hey we agree on something :-) ] ”

    We agree on lots of things, that is one of the things about teh right that makes us better than the pinko’s, we can broadly agree on where we want the country to go without being forced into pushing policies we do not agree with.

    The right encourage and welcome debate on issue’s, where as the pinko’s demand total obedience.

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  27. RRM (9,917 comments) says:

    restricting casino licenses = “running people’s lives for them”??? What a histrionic little idealogue you are.

    EDIT:
    “The right encourage and welcome debate on issue’s, where as the pinko’s demand total obedience.”

    I LOLed.

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  28. Chris C (126 comments) says:

    I wouldn’t particularly like to see this on Shelley Bay, because I live on Mt Vic on the eastern side, so my view is basically the Shelley Bay part of the Miramar peninsula. Even if we didn’t live here, we do go walking around there too, and I can’t imagine anything that’d ruin it faster than a damn development.

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  29. big bruv (13,884 comments) says:

    Chris C

    Are you joking?, the last time I went back home to Wellington I drove through Shelley Bay, the place is in disrepair and a total eyesore.

    Anything would be better than leaving it as it is.

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  30. Chris C (126 comments) says:

    I’m not sure when that was, but the old RNZAF base has been tarted up since the land was passed back to the iwi – so, since last year. There’s the Chocolate Fish there now, a few artist studios and design companies…

    …couple of buildings could do with sprucing up and at least one could be pulled down, but that’s no reason to concrete it all over and build a casino. :)

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  31. big bruv (13,884 comments) says:

    “There’s the Chocolate Fish there now”

    So it’s still an eyesore then?…..lol

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  32. RRM (9,917 comments) says:

    Chris – I see they’ve demoed the old rotten jetty that used to have the amazing lean on it.

    It is a stunning site, would be great for a hotel, apartment complex etc. Anything as long as it’s more wholesome than a casino…

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  33. side show bob (3,660 comments) says:

    Wasn’t this casino going to be built on the waterfront?. Perhaps a good attraction would be to run a book on when the water will come thru the casino floor. Money for jam I would say.

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  34. peterwn (3,271 comments) says:

    Nathan guy has tuned in pretty smartly – Wellington does NOT want a casino. Sky City’s publicity campaign a few years ago for a Wellington casino fell flat on its face. The anti-casino lobby groups in wellinmgton are well organised. Several years ago, an anti-casino lobbyist I knew well was very concerned that three Porirua City Councillors were pokie trust board members and were going to vote on Porirua’s new pokie policy. Very simple I said, they have a conflict of interest and should not be voting – go and see the Town Clerk. It came to pass that the **** hit the fan and the Town Clerk got a legal opinion that said they could not vote.

    Forget visions of James Bond, Monte Carlo etc. The roulette, blackjack, etc tables are but a small part of a NZ casino operation. The main ‘engine-rooms’ of NZ casinos are row upon row of pokies with a zombie sitting in front of each, card in slot, push, push pushing a button. Now a *REAL* pokie to me has a big handle on the side you pull down (perhaps shaped like an arm since they are also called one armed bandits) to make three dials spin.

    Long may Wellington NOT have a casino.

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  35. Kris K (3,570 comments) says:

    I agree with many others here – Wellington needs a casino like a hole in the head.
    Long may we have a strong lobby against such gambling establishments.

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  36. big bruv (13,884 comments) says:

    Kris K & Peterwn

    Have the developers of the proposed Casino made attendance compulsory?

    If you do not like the idea of a casino the don’t bloody go to the thing, why should your wishes stop others from making that choice?

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  37. Pete George (23,559 comments) says:

    Open right through Easter too?

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  38. malcolm (1,952 comments) says:

    but the old RNZAF base has been tarted up since the land was passed back to the iwi – so, since last year. There’s the Chocolate Fish there now, a few artist studios and design companies…

    There are a few outfits out there, but I’m sure it’s just the cheap rent and it looks like the buildings are not being maintained at all. The rusty nails are breaking through the paint. Probably too far gone. Give it a few years and the gutters will start growing trees, roof leaks etc and it will be all over.

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  39. gazzmaniac (2,307 comments) says:

    Simple solution to the problem. If the people of Wellington don’t want a casino, they won’t visit it, and it will go out of business – nobody is forced to go there. Let them build it and if the numbers don’t stack up, it will fail.
    And for the record, I also think Sky City in Auckland is a shithole – I much prefer Jupiter’s in Gold Coast City (not that I ever visit it much).

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  40. unaha-closp (1,164 comments) says:

    And for the record, I also think Sky City in Auckland is a shithole…

    It is a shithole. I’ve had $1 orange chips stacked so pressing down on the top of the stack binds all of the chips together using nothing more than the accumulated filth and then lift the stack using only the top chip – my current record is $8, but you can average $5 easy.

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  41. MikeNZ (3,234 comments) says:

    Nah NO CASINO!

    Shelly Bay is too pretty to give it over to organised crime, we’ve got enough of that in Parliament.

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  42. Scott (1,792 comments) says:

    Some people would say that it is okay to have a casino because nobody is forced to go there. Unfortunately what they are missing is that gambling is a vice. It traps people into an addiction and so they cannot help going there.

    We need a robust view of human nature that goes beyond — I want to do something so why shouldn’t I be allowed to do it? First of all we need to understand that the role of government is to minimise harm and to constrain evil. I believe that casinos are evil, in the sense that they take away from the good. Indeed gambling seems to have such a hold on people that frequent casinos that they lose all their money and destroy their families.

    On the other side what is the good that casinos do? I cannot think they do much good apart from a cheap thrill. In the same way that the government puts rules around the sale of cigarettes and alcohol because of their addictive nature, I believe it is appropriate to put rules around casinos. In fact I believe that New Zealand would be a better place without any casinos at all. They appear to do much harm because of the highly addictive nature of gambling within a casino, and very little good that I can see.

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  43. unaha-closp (1,164 comments) says:

    On the other side what is the good that casinos do?

    They do the same good that as bars or brothels.

    They provide a legal and safe place for activities to occur. You are less likely to get robbed there and the profits are taxed.

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