Image for No risk: The family who own Tasmania’s gambling industry ...

*Pic: From ‘Team Mulawa’ here: “Greg Farrell Jr, “Mr. Mulawa”: Greg is by nature very hands-on – activity done translates into learning and understanding – and he still applies this essential quality to the horses with ambitious zeal and earnest dedication. Greg is a natural horseman – his innate affection for and confident ease with horses is readily apparent in his daily interaction with the horses at every level. Although Greg’s primary vocational responsibility has always been Managing Director of Federal Group (the highly successful and widely respected Australian owned family business and the world’s second oldest hotel group), he always finds quality time for the horses. He remains integrally involved with all the handling and training of the Mulawa Arabians, from early breaking through the professional turn out of top level show ring performers in hand. (Pictured with ADVENT) “

First published Feb 5

Ed: This is an amazing read ...

For over 50 years a family little-known in Sydney society has controlled legal gambling in Tasmania. All of it. Every single gaming machine in the state is theirs. The Keno is theirs. They own one of the two casinos and a controlling stake in the other. By one calculation, 70¢ of every dollar lost by a Tasmanian in a pokie machine finds its way straight into the Farrell family’s voluminous pockets.

And befitting a family of such stature, the Farrells have always seemed to know pretty well everyone in Tasmania too. If, say, a sports club or a community group needs a little help, the Farrells are only a phone call away. They have long been good to both sides of Tasmanian politics. They went so far as to hire the former Labor premier Paul Lennon as a lobbyist after he left office and were generous enough to overlook the miasma of graft and corruption allegations that accompanied his resignation.

Through it all the Farrells portrayed themselves as passionate about Tasmania, driven to help develop the island state they love, to foster investment and employment.

But now the family’s famous luck appears to have changed.

Tasmania is going to the polls on March 3 and after years of reliable bipartisan support, Labor is suddenly off script, vowing to rip pokies out every pub and club in the state.

Public support for the Farrell family enterprise appears to be fracturing. Both conservative and progressive groups have voiced support for Labor’s policy and newspaper headlines have begun to focus on one of the the family’s poorly kept secrets …

Read more here

Ted Mead Satire: The new Lib-rals

Nick O’Malley, SMH: Sydney family takes 54 times more revenue than Tasmanian clubs from their pokies With the Tasmanian election becoming a battle over pokie machines, new research shows Tasmanian clubs keep just 0.9 per cent of their pokie revenue, while the Sydney-based family that owns a monopoly license over the machines in the state, keeps 49 per cent …

READ for yourself ...

The Australia Institute: Tasmanian club and pub pokies revenue: 0.9% to clubs, 48% to Farrell Group A report released today by The Australia Institute Tasmania written by Dr Charles Livingstone from Monash University has found that The Farrell Group’s share of EGM revenue (47.8%) far exceeds that of the clubs that house many of the poker machines, with the Farrell family reaping fifty-four times more than that derived by clubs which took just 0.9%. “The big winners from pokies in Tasmania are the Farrells, taking nearly half the net revenue,” Senior Lecturer at the School of Public Health and Preventive Medicine at Monash University, Dr Charles Livingstone said. “Clubs end up with less than 1% of the money that goes into the pokies. The Farrells take nearly half,” Livingstone said. Leanne Minshull, the Director of The Australia Institute Tasmania commented on the report: “The clubs and hotels are not getting much, and neither is the taxpayer. The Farrells a reaping $19.4 million more than the Tasmanian government … ”