HL Deb 06 November 2000 vol 618 c121WA
Baroness Howells of St Davids

asked Her Majesty's Government:

What plans they have to deregulate the bingo industry. [HL4535]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord Bassam of Brighton)

My honourable friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the Home Office is today publishing a consultation document which sets out proposals for an order under the Deregulation and Contracting Out Act, 1994, to deregulate certain aspects of the bingo industry. Our consultation document makes three specific proposals.

First, we propose the abolition of a requirement for licensed bingo clubs to notify the licensing authority of changes in their charges to players 14 days in advance. This part of our proposals will also have a small benefit for licensed casinos.

Second, we propose to change the law so as to allow bingo clubs to have a mixture of jackpot and lower prize gaming machines. Finally, we propose to amend the law on multiple bingo—also known as the "National Game"— so that it can offer more than one national, regional, and house prize.

The Government believe that these reforms will benefit both the industry and its customers. The consultation document asks for responses by 16 February 2001. Copies are being arranged to be placed in the Library.