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HAVE YOUR SAY ON CITY GAMBLING POLICY

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Bristol City Council is inviting members of the public to give their views on its draft gambling policy....
Bristol City Council is inviting members of the public to give their views on its draft gambling policy.

The policy, which the authority is required to produce prior to the implementation of the Gambling Act in 2007, sets out the principles that the council proposes to apply when exercising powers under the new act.

The policy, which has to have regard for guidance issued by the Gambling Commission, the regulatory body for casinos, bingo clubs, gaming machines and lotteries in Great Britain, is available to view online and can also be viewed at local libraries.

Gary Hopkins, executive member for environment and food safety, said the council had taken independent legal advice on guidance provided by the Gambling Commission on implementing the Gambling Act 2005. He added it had done so because the authority believed that, if followed, it would prevent members of the public from objecting to licence applications on the grounds they could result in public nuisance.

Mr Hopkins said: ''Clearly the protection of children and vulnerable young people as set out in the Act is vitally important and we as a city council have specifically examined the legislation to make certain that we are maximising our effectiveness in this area. It is also important that we safeguard the right of residents to object to an application for a gambling licence on the grounds of public nuisance in the way that they are entitled to. I believe the council in seeking to protecting that right is correct.'

The deadline for responses, which should be sent to the Licensing Office, Princess House, Princess Street, Bedminster, is 10 November, 2006.

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