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Jamaica Gaming Association gets new head

Published:Tuesday | February 7, 2017 | 3:21 PMTameka Gordon
Vice President, Compliance and Regulatory at Supreme Ventures, Tashia Hutton

Tashia Hutton, vice president of Compliance and Regulatory at Supreme Ventures Limited (SVL) is the new chair of the Jamaica Gaming Association.

Hutton takes over from the late SVL chairman, Brian George who headed the Association from its inception in early 2016 until the time of his passing in October 2016.

Director and Owner of Sizzling Slots 100 Gaming Lounge, Adam Epstein, will serve as vice president of the JGA.  

The JGA comprises the seven major players in the gaming industry:  Macau Gaming Lounge in Kingston; Treasure Hunt in Ocho Rios: Yahman Technology Limited, which operates Treasure Hunt in Montego Bay; Sizzling Slots, which manages 100 Gaming Lounge in Kingston; Everglades Farms, owners of Monte Carlo; Liguanea Lane Pharmacy, operators of Treasure Hunt in Kingston and Supreme Ventures Limited which operates the Acropolis Gaming Lounge in Kingston.

Hutton said among the top of her list will be to tackle the “issue of de-banking, which has the potential to threaten the survival of the gaming industry.”

Another areas of focus, she said, is the continued collaborative work with the various regulatory bodies to ensure the continued smooth implementation of the anti-money laundering framework.

Formalising the Association and boosting its recognition are also on the new chairperson's agenda, SVL said in a release.

“We must raise the awareness of the high level of regulations that govern the industry, given the lack of awareness in other sectors as to the comprehensive guidelines by which we operate,” Hutton said.

In one of the last interviews with the former SVL head, George called for industry players to increase their compliance with regulations governing the sector.

He suggested players also improve their ‘Know Your Customer' requirements mandated by anti-money laundering laws to "knowing your customer's customers" and how their source of funds impacts the business, in order to mitigate against the fallout of de-banking.

George also insisted that the Betting, Gaming and Lotteries Commission adopt a zero-tolerance approach to breaches.

“I look forward to working with the team to establish an Association that can move the industry forward in a systematic and sustained way. This can only benefit the industry and by extension, the country,” Hutton said.