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Shepparton manager fears for community clubs' future

The manager of Shepparton Club says the Victorian Government is 'taxing clubs into oblivion'.

ESTELLE GRIEPINK January 29, 2014 4:48am

New tax money the Victorian Government takes is cash that won't go back into the Shepparton community, Shepparton Club manager Don Field says.


An increase in the gaming tax will put another nail in the coffin for community clubs, Shepparton Club’s manager says.

From April 1, the top two tax brackets for hotel and club venue operators will be hit with a 4.2 per cent gaming tax hike.

The measure is expected to raise an extra $100 million in tax revenue for the Victorian Government by 2017.

Manager Don Field said the Shepparton Club would soon owe the government an extra $120000 to $150000 a year.

‘‘Clubs get taxed enough as it is and a lot of them are already on the verge of shutting down,’’ Mr Field said.

‘‘I’ve been in this business for 40 years and I’ve never seen it this bad. The state government is taxing us into oblivion.’’

In order to ease financial burden on hotels and clubs, the government will allow clubs to decrease the legal minimum return to players to 85 cents in the dollar, down from 87 cents.

But Mr Field said he would not accept the government’s ‘‘olive branch’’.

‘‘I’d never do that to our customers, that would be ripping them off,’’ he said.

‘‘Most clubs return 90 to 92 cents.’’

Mr Field said his biggest concern was the money paid to the government would take away from Shepparton causes.

The club regularly donates to Goulburn Valley Hospice, Wanganui Netball Club, Mentoring through Motoring and other charity and community causes.

‘‘The club contributes to the community more than the majority of businesses,’’ he said.

‘‘Our profits go back into the community. That’s what clubs are all about.’’

 

The government hikes will see hotel venue operators’ rates increase to 55.03 per cent and 62.53 per cent, respectively, from 50.83 per cent and 58.33 per cent.

Club rates will climb to 46.7 per cent and 54.2 per cent, respectively, from 42.5 per cent and 50 per cent.

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