Construction costs are mounting for the former Alston’s casino, and it appears the money will not be coming from taxpayers.
The ABC has learnt the Alston Resort will not have to pay the state’s $1.9 billion gambling tax as the government has committed to spend $10 million of that on the casino.
However, a report in The Advertiser today shows the Alton’s management has also revealed a $6 million bonus plan that will give the resort a profit of $2 million over the next three years.
With that figure, Alston will have a profit margin of more than 50 per cent.
Alston management is also set to give the casino $6.5 million of the $10m it already owes the state.
In a statement, the resort said the $6m bonus plan was for the “future benefit of the company”.
“This will give us the flexibility to increase our profits to maximise the benefit to taxpayers,” the statement said.
A statement from Alston said the plan would allow the company to focus on a strategy of making more money from the casino, rather than relying on the state to cover any future costs.
“The $6 m bonus is for the future benefit of Alston and the people of Victoria,” the company said.
The state’s casino tax has been a source of tension for Alston.
Last month, the casino’s owner, former Prime Minister Kevin Rudd, accused the state of being “obsessed with money” and “a little bit of an elitist, maybe a little bit out of touch”.
The Victorian government has previously said it would not pay the tax unless Alston paid a minimum of $10.4 million.
But the state Government has said it is prepared to take on the cost of the casino as long as the resort pays its fair share.
The ABC is awaiting comment from the state Department of Finance.
Topics:government-and-politics,economic-trends,community-and.disputes,tourism,sunday-morning-australiaFirst posted March 10, 2019 17:55:34Contact Lisa MaitlandMore stories from Victoria