One Canberra club has announced a venue won't be reopening as the ACT government considers allowing gaming facilities in the next stage of eased restrictions.
Eastlake Football Club board members decided last month to permanently close the Kaleen venue, which hasn't reopened since all clubs were forced to shut down in March.
Club president Lorin Joyce said the decision was due to circumstances "beyond the board's control", compounded by COVID-19.
"Significant running costs of this large building with a diminishing revenue base, as well as unresolved lengthy planning delays which have been in the process since late 2016, and increased regulatory costs of operating gaming machines in the ACT, have all left the board with no other choice but to close the venue," he said.
Staff at the venue have been told they will be redeployed across Eastlake's other Canberra clubs.
Eastlake's Griffith and Calwell clubs reopened when restrictions eased on June 19 but the Gungahlin and Kaleen venues remained closed. In a social media post the club said it would be "financially irresponsible" to reopen them.
Mr Joyce was confident the Gungahlin club would survive and said it would reopen when it was profitable to do so.
Prime Minister Scott Morrison ordered clubs to close on March 23. As the ACT has relaxed rules, venues opened their doors with capacity restrictions.
Currently, venues can have up to 100 patrons per enclosed space while maintaining the four-square-metre per-person rule.
Gaming facilities have not reopened, and were listed for consideration under stage three of the ACT government's recovery plan.
Alliance for Gambling Reform executive director Tony Mohr urged governments to delay switching on poker machines to protect vulnerable community members.
Since the forced shut down in March he said ACT residents would have spent $46 million on gaming.
On Thursday, clubs received a letter from the ACT government confirming the Chief Health Officer was considering allowing electronic gaming in clubs and pubs, and casinos from July 10.
Clubs ACT chief executive Gwyn Rees said clubs were struggling to survive and expected further closures.
"On an almost daily basis now, clubs are dealing with distressed employees and there is a heightened level of uncertainty regarding the future of their employment and stress in some cases as a result of decreased earnings," he said.
The select committee on the COVID-19 pandemic response handed down an interim report on Thursday, recommending the government publish the health advice that states gaming facilities shouldn't be reopened until stage three.
Mr Rees he had continually asked for that information which had not been made available.
ACT Chief Health Officer Kerryn Coleman told the committee game machines posed the same risk as large gatherings of people moving around and were high-touch surfaces.
Mr Mohr was concerned about what the reopening of gaming facilities would mean for vulnerable people.
He said major life events such as losing a job or coming under financial stress can make people more vulnerable to harmful gambling, things more prevalent in the pandemic.
"It's been a real silver lining for a lot of people," he said, as many had stopped gambling altogether through this period.
Mr Mohr said it was a good time for governments to consider reform as the machines clicked back on.