However, compared to 2013, revenue is slightly lower for both counties. Last year Clark County collected approximately $1.6 million in casino tax revenues, a decrease of less than 1 percent from the previous year. Up slightly from 2014, last year statewide adjusted gross casino revenues were approximately $812 million, according to data from the Ohio Control Commission. The revenues are collected from casinos in Columbus, Cincinnati, Cleveland and Toledo. Local leaders said, the money provides a shot in the arm for general fund dollars in area schools and counties.
Champaign County administrator, Andrea Millice, said, in the past few years funding from the casino revenue has been steady. The money is contained in the county’s general fund and is used for a variety of purposes. Millice said, the money isn’t earmarked for specific use, and they use the extra income for permanent improvements which needed attention, according to the Springfield News-Sun. Basic repairs to paved parking lots and roofs at some county buildings have been made in the past, said Millice. Champaign County received its first payment in 2012.
Counties are provided with quarterly payments from the state derived from taxed gross casino revenues. Twice a year, school districts receive approximately one-third, their share, of the taxes. The counties receive about 51 percent, while the remainder is split between schools and payments that are smaller and go toward host cities, law enforcement training and gambling addiction services. According to the Ohio Department of Taxation, approximately 33 percent of gross casino revenue is taxed by the state.
Ohio Department of Taxation reports indicate that last year Springfield City Schools received approximately $390,000, while about $100,000 went to Urbana City Schools. Northeastern Local Schools received the next largest payment for approximately $170,000, while the Graham Local School District in Champaign County was next in line with about $100,000.
Superintendent Gregg Morris said, Clark-Shawnee Local Schools received approximately $105,000 from casinos. The money, which goes into the district’s general fund, accounts for approximately half a percent of the fund. Morris said that the district is keeping a close eye on its budget after going through a period of cuts. The money from the casino isn’t used for any particular project. According to Morris, any money received from the casinos is used to stretch the budget, which helps to avoid going to voters for funds. The allocation of casino monies is much the same for Graham Local Schools as well, according to its district treasurer Judy Geers.