INDEPENDENT NEWS

Explain variance in problem gambling funds

Published: Thu 12 Oct 2006 12:55 AM
Sandra Goudie MP
National Party Internal Affairs Spokeswoman
12 October 2006
Minister must explain variance in problem gambling funding
Associate Minister of Health Damien O’Connor must explain the huge variance in the amount of funding received by problem gambling intervention service providers, says National’s Internal Affairs spokeswoman, Sandra Goudie.
Parliamentary written questions reveal that providers are funded anything from $770 to $17,895 for each person using their problem gambling intervention services.
“The Minister’s answers reveal that Pacific Peoples Addiction Service was funded $143,160 for intervention services in the 2005/06 year and had eight service users – that’s $17,895 for each person using its service.
“Te Whanau o Waipareira Trust received $186,976 for intervention services in the 2005/06 year and had 13 users –that’s $14,382 for each user.
“At the other end of the scale, Woodlands Trust received $163,352 in the 2005/06 year and had 212 users – that’s $770 for each person using their service.
“The Minister needs to explain the wildly differing amounts of funding awarded to the different providers. Of course, some of the providers offer different services, but surely not to the extent that they receive up to $17,000 more in funding per user.
“Taxpayers need assurance from the Minister that all the spending, particularly the funding of providers who receive enormous amounts of money per service user, has been appropriate.
“Mr O’Connor needs to assure taxpayers that none of their money has been wasted.”
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Attached: Parliamentary question 9571(2006) –Q text (Word doc), Answer table (PDF)
9571 (2006). Sandra Goudie to the Associate Minister of Health (26 Jul 2006):
Further to the answer to question for written answer 5864 (2006), was data collected on the service users which could be classed as problem gamblers only; if so, how many were identified as such for each each of the gambling prevention service providers for each financial year since 2001?
Hon Damien O'Connor (Associate Minister of Health) replied: The Ministry of Health assumed responsibility for the funding and co-ordination of problem gambling services from 1 July 2004. This response is limited to that timeframe. In addition to the information provided in response to WPQ 5864 (2006), I am now supplying updated data. The information requested is provided in the attachment.
Attachment (PDF)
ENDS

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