Pennsylvania Casino Revenues Rise Slightly In May To $275m

Pennsylvania Casino Revenues Rise Slightly In May To $275mThe Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board has released its casino figures for May, revealing a slight increase in revenues to $275 million compared to the same month last year. From that tally, the state’s 12 casinos generated $210.8 million in slot machine revenues, down 0.20% year-over-year, while table games took in $64.2 million, up 2.3% from May 2013. Overall, the state then collected around $112 million by way of gambling taxes.
In terms of table games, the Sands Casino Resort posted the strongest growth in revenues, up 12% to $15,472,382, while on the other side of the coin the Meadows Racetrack and Casino experienced a 30% drop in revenues to $2,905,989, from the $4,134,336 taken a year earlier.
As for slots, the Valley Forge Casino Resort returned the highest growth, up 19% to $6,483,874, while Harrah’s Philadelphia Casino and Racetrack saw its revenues fall by 8.92% to $19,494,045.
Since 2007, the Keystone State has seen its casino industry grow each year, but in 2013 revenues declined for the first time ever, dropping 1.4% to $3.1 billion, resulting in tax revenues also falling by 4% to just under $1.4 billion.
Of pressing concern for Pennsylvania is the $1.2 billion budget deficit it is currently facing and so the state is now considering online poker regulation to help plug the enormous gap. As Sharon Ward, director of the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center, explains:
“The only way you can close a deficit of that size is with budget cuts in areas such as health care or education, or with revenue increases.”
According to a feasibility study produced by Econsult, online poker regulation could help generate a further $129 million in annual revenues for Pennsylvania. Championing the charge for legislation is State Sen. Edwin Erickson, who on Tuesday introduced his new internet gambling bill, State Bill 1386, to the state legislature. As the bill states:
“Developments in technology and recent legal decisions have created an opportunity to legalize interactive poker as a means to further enhance and complement the benefits delivered by casino gaming, licensed facilities and the communities in which they operate.”