Close to $400 million has been generated by expanded gambling in Pennsylvania, within the first year since legislation allowed changes. In late 2017, the state passed a gambling expansion bill with online casino gaming, sportsbooks and satellite casinos now legalized, among other changes. As the licensing process began for each category, the cash began rolling in, so much so, that budget estimates have now been surpassed.
Millions Roll In:
Since late last year, the new gambling options for the state have brought in close to $400 million. Operators have begun applying for licensing for casino gaming, online casino and poker games and sports books. The lottery expanded as well as the daily fantasy sports industry, which led to an increase in tax revenues this year.
With the satellite casino portion of the new law, auction profits helped to increase the amount of money earned by the state in 2018. Starting in January, the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board hosted auctions where operators could bid for licensing to operate a mini-casino. Several operators bid during the early months of the year, bringing in a ton of extra cash to the state.
According to a recent press release…
PlayPennsylvania.com’s analyst Jessica Welman commented on the gambling expansion revenues by stating: “The most notable aspect of the significant revenue that has been generated is that this is almost completely from fees, rather than tax revenue gained from gamblers. Clearly there is enough interest in Pennsylvania’s enormous market so far to generate the fees.”
Breakdown of Earnings:
It is interesting to note that the revenues generated this year are mostly from licensing and gaming petitions. The industries have not even started yet, so there is great potential to see the state strongly increase their total gaming revenues once all the new changes are in effect and services are in full operation.
For 2018, PlayPennsylvania was able to break down the revenues generated this year by using official statistics as well as estimates from the online lottery, keno and virtual sports sale numbers. It has been estimated that the state was able to generate over $23 million from online lotto games, keno and virtual sports combined.
With licensing for mini-casinos, the auctions generated $128 million. With interactive gaming petitions, the licensing process for online casino and poker games, $94 million was paid by interested parties. A total of $78 million was paid for casino licensing while petitions for sports betting brought in $60 million. Tax revenue from daily fantasy sports rounded out the earnings, generating $1.4 million.
As 2019 begins, it is expected that more revenues will be generated for the state as online gaming operations begin as well as sports betting moves forward. The Hollywood Casino at Penn National was the first to launch sports betting last month and more operators are expected to begin their services as the New Year begins.