CASINO

No tax hike for Maryland casino owners, says Senate President Miller

TAGs: Jr, Maryland, Thomas Mike Miller

Maryland casino owners will finally be able to have a good night sleep after Maryland Senate President Thomas Mike Miller, Jr. doused off casino tax hike rumors.

Baltimore Business Journal reported that Senate President Miller assured casino owners that the state will not further burden them with more taxes during the Annapolis Summit moderated by radio show host Marc Steiner.

No tax hike for Maryland casino owners, says Senate President MillerMiller’s statement came in response to a question from Montgomery County Council of PTAs president Paul Gellar that the state is getting shortchanged by the casino owners.

Contrary to Gellar’s belief, Miller pointed out that Maryland casinos are already giving 40 percent of their earnings to the state through taxes. The casinos’ contribution goes into the state’s Education Trust Fund, according to the senator.

He also cited data from Maryland Lottery and Gaming which indicated that 15 percent of table proceeds go to the fund while 5 percent goes to local impact grants. The percentage of slots revenue, according to Miller, varies from casino to casino

Miller also said that the taxes paid by Maryland casinos is higher than the tax rate imposed on Las Vegas casinos, which is eight percent.

“We have the highest tax anywhere in the U.S. and we put more money into Gamblers Anonymous than any other state,” Miller said, according to the news website. “These industries are paying a very, very high tax. It’s very competitive and we are very fortunate to have what we have.”

Miller said Maryland is “fortunate to have what he have” and told Gellar the legislature will not be able to increase the rates. He added that the state will not lower its rates despite pressure from casino owners who say they are creating tons of jobs.

Figures released Thursday by the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Agency show the state’s six casinos generated revenue of just under $133.5m in December, easily eclipsing the previous record of $104.4m set last May by the state’s other five casinos.

The monthly total was up 40.2% year-on-year, but down 3.8% if you factor MGM National Harbor out of the equation.

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