Just five years after its first casino opened, Pennsylvania now generates more tax revenue from card games and slot machines than any other state in the nation. This isn’t new, the Keystone State left Las Vegas and places like Atlantic City in the dust long ago as far as tax revenue goes. At a high tax rate of 55 percent on casinos, the Keystone State’s treasury raked in more than $1.3 billion from its 10 casinos last year.
The Keystone State has been the poster boy for successful gambling expansion. Since 2006, casino taxes and licensing fees in Pennsylvania have generated $5.4 billion and casinos have created over 15,000 jobs, which in a country with rising unemployment, is something other state governments are taking note of.
For some states, the willingness to expand gambling to compete has come too late. In New Jersey, lawmakers are making a push for sportsbetting in the former powerhouse of the Northeast, as it stands now, The Garden State now ranks only 10th, with $306 million in tax revenue, according to the American Gaming Association and Atlantic City is relying on gimmicks and promotions to get people to visit their casinos.
If there’s one link between Pennsylvania and Atlantic City, it’s that one state’s gain has been the others loss. Frank J. Fahrenkopf Jr., president and CEO of the American Gaming Association said about the success of Pennsylvania casinos,“…it has been at the expense of Atlantic City in many ways.” – Washington Times.
Fahrenkopf reasoned that the economic recession and rise of Pennsylvania casinos combined together has been like a huge storm eating away at Atlantic City’s share of the gaming market.
It seems the days of BoardWalk Empire can only be re-lived by watching the television show.