The decision affects the installation or expansion of bingos, casinos, game rooms and betting establishments
From the City Council they fear that, after the veto of Barcelona, ”there may be an increase in applications” in the city
The Local Government Board of L’Hospitalet de Llobregat (Barcelona) has approved the suspension for one year of new licenses for activities related to gambling in the city. The decision affects the installation or expansion of bingos, casinos, game halls and similar venues in areas of the city with the possibility of developing these recreational uses. From the consistory they explain that, in the municipality, there are currently registered three bingo halls and two game rooms and that the decision was made out of fear that, as a result of the suspension of new licenses in Barcelona, ”there could be an increase in applications in L’Hospitalet& rdquor;.
Other nearby municipalities have also recently mobilized to prevent or limit the growth of this type of establishment. The Badalona City Council (Barcelonès) approved a motion at the end of April with the support of all political parties to prevent new betting houses from being installed in the city. In this case, the movement came after a company obtained a license to open in the working-class neighborhood of Llefià, which has led to multiple complaints and neighborhood protests. Mayor, Xavier Garcia Albiolalso undertook to study the possibility of pass a moratorium to be able to regulate urbanistically this type of business.
With the approval of the suspension of licenses for one year in L’Hospitalet, it is sought that “no changes are formalized in the urban situation of the city that could condition the formulation and execution of the planning instrument that is to be drafted& rdquor ;, they comment from the consistory in a statement.
Thus, the City Council points out that will now study the modification of urban planning in force to make an updated regulation that “allows for better control of the new implementation of gaming and betting venues& rdquor ;. The goal is to deal with the health problems and dependency that these activities can generate and their possible influence on the population, especially on young people, children and vulnerable people.
Specifically, the L’Hospitalet town hall wants to regulate the installation of gambling activities in industrial spaces or zones, where recreational use is admitted without limitations and where “the demand for licenses has increased due to its proximity to residential areas.” In addition, it is considered “insufficient & rdquor; current separation distance limitation 100 meters from those considered sensitive spaces -institutional, religious, health and educational buildings- and it is proposed to extend the radius of action to avoid proximity to these areas.
In addition, they raise other measures complementary measures to avoid the excessive proliferation of sites that promote gambling on the Internet, such as: controlling or preventing access to online gaming sites from municipal offices, requesting the competent administrations to limit gambling advertising, promoting prevention campaigns o Promote informative and educational sessions on the possible negative effects of gambling on health and behaviour.
Bellvitge, in the prevention of addictions
The Department of the Vice Presidency and of Economy and Finance and the Bellvtige University Hospital (HUB), also located in L’Hospitalet, signed a collaboration agreement on Thursday, April 29, to promote research in the field of addiction prevention and healthy behaviors related to gambling.
The purpose of this collaboration is carry out studies or carry out other research actions whose purpose is to assess the changes that are taking place in the offer and the modalities of gambling and the effects that these may have on the behavior of the players, especially among the youngest and in other vulnerable groups.
More news from L’Hospitalet in the local edition of EL PERIÓDICO