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Qld government tight-lipped on POC

Mark Oberhardt


The Queensland government is remaining tight-lipped about how it intends to distribute money raised from the new gambling Point of Consumption tax.

The Queensland government is remaining tight-lipped, despite growing pressure from the racing industry, about how it intends to distribute money from the new Point of Consumption tax.

The POC, which is a 15 per cent levy on all bets on Queensland racing, is set to be introduced on October 1.

While NSW and Victoria have already indicated racing in those states will get healthy POC related boosts, the Queensland government has not revealed its plans.

Leading Brisbane trainer Robert Heathcote made an impassioned plea on radio this week for Racing Minister Stirling Hinchliffe to clear the air on POC.

Heathcote told RadioTAB that Hinchliffe should be "knocking down the door" of treasurer Jackie Trad demanding racing get a large share of the POC.

He said Queensland was falling further behind NSW and Victoria in many aspects of racing and needed an urgent boost.

"We need help and we need it now," Heathcote said.

Hinchliffe did not reply to questions put to him by AAP regarding his stand on POC and Heathcote's criticism.

Cabinet is set to discuss POC on Monday with a recommendation to go to a review committee on Wednesday.

There are divided opinions in cabinet on how the tax, which should raise about $70 million, will be spread.

Racing's case has not been helped in recent weeks by stories on Queensland's troubled credit rating and unemployment figures.

It appears certain the Queensland government will make up a payment by Racing Queensland back to UBET for its deduction and a further $17 million country racing package will be funded from the POC.

Estimates on the remaining money range from $10 million to $25 million and one option is for cabinet to defer a decision on the remaining money until some of the tax has been collected.

It would give them a better idea of how much will be raised.