- The Romsey Hotel decision influenced how applications for gaming machines are heard at the Victorian Commission for Gambling and Liquor Regulation and the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal.
- It set a precedent for future hearings that decisions must take into account the character of the community and the sort of community where people want to live.
- In 2004, the Romsey Hotel lodged an application to install 30 gaming machines.
- The Macedon Ranges Shire Council refused the application following substantial community opposition.
- The then Victorian Commission for Gambling Regulation also refused the Romsey Hotel's application two years later, in 2006.
- In 2007, the hotel owner took the case to the Victorian Civil and Administrative Tribunal, where the tribunal overturned the commission's decision and approved the machines.
- The tribunal found that any negative effects of pokie machines would be outweighed by the positive economic benefits to the area.
- The tribunal hearing did not take into account the community objections that had been presented to the commission.
- Macedon Ranges Shire Council then voted to appeal the tribunal's decision in the Supreme Court on behalf of its community.
- In 2008, the Supreme Court of Victoria ruled the tribunal was in error in approving the application.
- The court found that community opposition is a relevant consideration in determining the social and economic impact of a proposal and therefore must be considered as required by the Gambling Regulation Act 2003.
- The court set the original decision aside, and sent the case went back to the tribunal to be reheard.
- On 12 November 2009, the tribunal decided to refuse the application for gaming machines.
- Romsey Hotel commission decision 21 April 2006
- First tribunal decision - Romsey Hotel Pty Ltd v Victorian Commission for Gambling Regulation
- Supreme Court decision - Macedon Ranges Shire Council v Romsey Hotel Pty Ltd & Anor
- Second tribunal decision - Romsey Hotel Pty Ltd v Victorian Commission for Gambling Regulation & Anor
See our infographic on the Macedon Ranges Shire and compare its pokies statistics with other councils across Victoria.