Arkansas’ casino industry is growing rapidly. Since 2018, Class III gambling venues have been able to operate here. The state’s Native American tribes have been preparing to open new casinos in the state ever since. This week, the Cherokee Nation revealed a new study that shows how much revenue the new Russellville casino will generate.
It’s a great time to be a casino fan in Arkansas. Several new gaming venues are scheduled to open here over the next few years. Today, we’re going to look at how much money a casino-resort in Russellville could generate.
Let’s get into it!
Arkansas Finally Expands Its Gambling Industry
Arkansas hasn’t always been a gambling hub. In fact, most traditional forms of gambling were banned here until fairly recently. Finally, in 2018, lawmakers in this state decided it was time to make a change.
A bill was passed that year that allows four Class III casinos to open in the state. These venues will be operated by Native American tribes. Not long after this bill was passed, tribes began coming up with casino plans.
Arkansas also now allows sports betting. In July of 2019, the first legal sports wager was placed here.
There are now several popular gaming venues in this state. One that’s beginning to generate serious revenue is the Southland Casino. Recently, this casino began offering its first sports betting options just in time for the Super Bowl.
More casinos are scheduled to open here over the next few years. The Cherokee Nation has worked hard to have plans for a new Russellville casino approved. This week, the tribe released information about how much revenue this new casino could generate for the state.
The New Russellville Casino Will Generate Billions
Arkansas is shaping up to be a major new casino market. All of the casinos that open here are likely to be successful. According to the Cherokee Nation, the new Russellville casino will be a serious revenue generator.
The tribe released a study that indicates this casino will generate billions of dollars. An economic impact of more than $3 billion is expected over the first 10 years of operating. This study was made by the Economic Impact Group, which used information from six different counties to form these statistics.
Chuck Garrett, CEO of Cherokee Nation Businesses, commented on the report to the media this week.
“In forming our plans for Legends Resort & Casino, we turned to a network of experts to help us understand how this project would impact the region’s economy,” he said. “It was fitting for us to engage this research through Dr. Russell Evans and EIG who are already very familiar with current CNB operations.”
The study also claims that more than 1,700 jobs will become available once the casino is up and running. Lawmakers are likely to see these figures and should give the green light to begin construction within a couple of months.
Casinos Already Generate Millions in Tax Money for Arkansas
Most analysts predicted that Arkansas would become a hot casino market. These predictions seem to be correct. Since casinos began opening here, revenue from this industry has been skyrocketing.
In October of 2019, a revenue record was set. Casinos in the state brought in an incredible $554.4 million. That beat the state’s forecast by $36.8 million. With sports betting now up and running, revenue earnings are increasing even more.
The new Russellville casino will be a major revenue generator for the state, as well. If the estimates are correct, it will bring in billions to the state within a decade.
As of now, only four casinos are allowed to open here. That may change in the future. As time goes now, state officials may decide to allow more gambling venues to start operating.
We’ll need to wait for the state to approve the Cherokee Nation’s new gaming venue. Stay tuned for updates over the next few months!