Pennsylvania faces $424 million gaming tax deficit

By Hayley Grammer

A casino shutdown of over three months cost Pennsylvania brick-and-mortar casino operators $968.8 million in operating revenue, equating to approximately $424 million in gaming taxes, according to the Allegheny Institute.

Pennsylvania collects more in tax revenue from casinos than any other state, with the study estimating lost casino earnings of $143.5 million during the second half of March, $415 million in April and May and another $140.3 million in June from slot machines alone.

Slot revenue is taxed at a higher rate compared to table games, with the state taking over 50% of gross revenue, and in the 2018/19 fiscal year, more than $1.2 billion in taxes was collected just from slot machines.

“Although online gaming revenue from slots, table games and poker rose to record setting highs, the total intake from January through June ($206.6 million) doesn’t even cover a quarter of the estimated losses from slot and table games,” the report stated.

While online casinos helped alleviate some losses during the closures, numbers didn’t come close to making up for losses as a result of physical shutdowns, with online taxes from internet slots and tables totalling around $80 million in the first half of 2020.


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