Colorado is home to a large and successful casino industry. Most of the casinos here are located in three different cities. According to new reports, the casinos in Cripple Creek will remain open to the public, despite the state’s new safety regulations.
It’s good news for gambling fans in this city. No one knows how long the gambling venues in this city will remain open for, though. Today, we’re going to talk about what’s happening with the casino industry in Colorado right now.
Let’s get into it!
Colorado’s Casino Revenue Has Been Increasing Lately
Like all other states, Colorado forced all of its casinos to shut down back in March. This took a huge toll on the state’s gambling cities. Here, only Black Hawk, Central City, and Cripple Creek are able to legally host commercial casinos.
Officials in each of these cities immediately started working to get their casinos operational again. Colorado’s lawmakers were hesitant to open anything up, though. Many feared that doing so would result in another major infection spike.
Finally, in late June, casinos in this state were given permission to slowly reopen. Initially, these venues were only able to offer players slot games. In September, officials began allowing the casinos here to offer table games.
Casino revenue has been gradually increasing here each month. The state’s new sports betting industry is also bringing casinos some much-needed revenue. In September, the state saw $207 million in sports wagers.
It should come as no surprise that casino revenue remains far lower this year than in 2019. Unfortunately, the downward trend is likely to continue. State leaders recently announced a new set of regulations that will have an impact on the casino industry.
Fortunately, not every city is closing down its gambling venues.
Official Claims the Casinos in Cripple Creek Will Remain Open
Cripple Creek is home to many of Colorado’s most popular casinos. Officials here immediately expressed concern when the new regulations were announced by Governor Jared Polis. Fortunately, these new rules will not force these casinos to shut down again.
This week, Teller County Commissioner Norm Steen spoke to the media and claimed the casinos in Cripple Creek will remain open to the public. For now, these venues will need to limit capacity to just 25%, or less than 50 people. It’s not ideal, yet casinos are simply happy to hear they can continue operating.
Matt Andrighetti, general manager of the Wildwood Casino, told the media this news has been fantastic for him and other casino operators in the city.
“Big big weight that was lifted off our shoulders,” he said. “It came a little later in the day than we preferred but good news delivered late is better than bad news delivered anytime. We’re not concerned about the revenue impacts right now. We’re happy we could stay open and keep our people employed through the holidays.”
This news is also fantastic for the thousands of individuals employed in Cripple Creek’s casino industry. For months, these individuals were left without work. For now, the casino jobs in the city will remain in place.
No one knows how things will look in the future. Colorado’s health department will keep an eye on infection rates from Cripple Creek. For now, these rates are extremely low. If a spike is seen, however, it’s reasonable to assume the casinos here will shut down again.
Colorado’s Sports Betting Industry is Growing
Lawmakers in Colorado were interested in legalizing sports betting since PASPA was removed in 2018. Finally, in November of 2019, a vote was passed to allow this form of gambling. It wasn’t until mid-2020 that the state’s sports betting industry launched, though.
It didn’t come at the most ideal time. When the first sportsbooks began operating here, many of the country’s largest sports leagues were still shut down. As the months went on, more of these leagues started resuming their seasons.
Colorado now has a very large and successful sports betting industry. Mobile sports betting is proving to bring in the most money for the state. Nearly 98% of all sports wagers placed here are done online.
Interestingly, bettors have been winning big here lately. In September, the state’s betting platforms held onto just 2% of the wagers placed here. That brought in $4.1 million and only $70,000 via taxes for the state.
No one expects sports betting operations to slow down here. The NFL season is bringing in a huge number of bets every week. With many casinos in the state now shut down, gambling fans are turning to online sports betting.
For now, the casinos in Cripple Creek will remain open. Health officials will need to keep an eye on infection rates here. Stay tuned for updates over the next few weeks!
Are you surprised to see some of the casinos in Colorado remaining open? How do you think the casino industry here will look in 2021? Let us know in the comments section below!