Racinos’ slots revenue tops $1B

COLUMBUS — State lottery officials say annual gambling revenue from slot machines at Ohio’s seven racinos has topped $1 billion for the first time.

Leading the way is MGM Northfield Park in Northfield, the former Hard Rock Rocksino Northfield Park, with $255.9 million in revenue.

Meanwhile, Hollywood Gaming Mahoning Valley Race Course in Austintown was No. 5 with $123.8 million in revenue. Hollywood Gaming Dayton Raceway in Dayton was No. 6, posting revenue of $110.6 million. Both racinos are owned by Penn National Gaming Inc. of Wyomissing, Pa.

Rounding out the seven are No. 2 Eldorado Gaming Scioto Downs, Columbus, $178.2 million; Miami Valley Gaming, Lebanon, $171.5 million, at No. 3; JACK Thistledown Racino, Cleveland, at No. 4 with $133.6 million; and Belterra Park Gaming, Cincinnati, at No. 7 with $84.6 million.

The Ohio Lottery Commission recently reported revenue from the video lottery terminals at racinos for fiscal year 2019, which ended in June, reached $1,058,638,754.

Statewide revenue from racinos, or horse tracks outfitted with video slot machines, has grown steadily since the first racino launched in 2012.

Revenue from video lottery terminals at racinos topped more than $987 million statewide in fiscal year 2018; more than $926 million in fiscal year 2017; more than $868 million in fiscal year 2016; and more than $772 million in fiscal year 2015.

The fiscal year runs from July to June.

In Austintown last month, wagering was down 3.7 percent from May, from $116.3 million to $112 million. The amount of credits won and revenue were down in June from May, too — 3.9 percent for credits won, from $103 million to $99.3 million and 2.2 percent for revenue, from $11.2 million to a little more than $11 million.

June’s numbers were better than June 2018, however. Wagering was up 12.6 percent from $99.4 million; credits won, up 13 percent from $87.8 million; and revenue, up 8.9 percent from $10.1 million from the previous year.

Last month, the percent payout was 90.1, down from 90.3 percent in May and the VLT win per day was $334, up from $331 in May. Both months had an average of 1,101 VLTs in play.

Of the net winnings in June, $7.2 million was paid to the Penn National; $3.6 million to the lottery commission; and $36,665 to problem gambling services.

The Ohio Casino Control Commission operates on the calendar year. It reported this week casino revenue statewide from January through June totaled more than $427 million. Revenue in June, however, was down $3.2 million, or 4.3 percent, from May, all but wiping out the 4 percent gain in revenue the casinos had in May from April.

Ohio’s four casinos — JACK Cleveland Casino, JACK Cincinnati Casino, Hollywood Casino Toledo and Hollywood Casino Columbus — are allowed to offer table games and skilled-based slots, unlike racinos.

business@tribtoday.com

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