The machines, which include games like virtual roulette, bingo and racing, have been dubbed the “crack cocaine of gambling”.
Yet a government review of maximum stakes has continued to allow £100 on a single stake.
Medway Labour leader Cllr Vince Maple, who said there are about 130 of the machines in Medway, said: “This is a lost opportunity. During these times of cuts and economic hardships, the decision to keep the maximum spin at £100 is the last thing Medway needs.
“There should not be high-stake gaming content of this nature in town centres. It is extremely disappointing that the government didn’t move the maximum spin to just £2 or remove the content completely as has happened in other countries.”
Despite being told the maximum stake had not changed, Medway’s community safety chief Cllr Peter Hicks (Con) said: “It’s a step in the right direction. That’s fine, that’s the first step, and if further controls need to be implemented in due course then there is an opportunity for those to come forward.”
The government’s report, however, did say there were “serious concerns” about £100-a-spin machines.
It added: “There remains a serious case to answer in relation to the potential harm caused by [these] gaming machines and we consider their future to be unresolved pending further work, which is already under way.”
Adrian Parkinson of the Stop the Fixed-Odds Betting Terminals campaign said Britain should have banned high stakes immediately, like Ireland.
He added: “It astounds me how the bookmaking industry has for 12 years manipulated and lied to government about these highly addictive machines and again got away with it.
“However, the bookies now know they are in the spotlight with increasing evidence of the addictive nature of the machines and, more worryingly, the news that they are being used to launder drug money.”