Massachusetts is currently home to several commercial casino-resorts. For most of 2020, however, these gambling venues have been forced to limit their number of available games to players. This week, an important piece of Massachusetts casino news finally came out. Roulette is coming back to the state’s casinos!
Many felt this was a long time coming. The gambling properties here are still struggling to bring in players and many felt it was due to the lack of games available. Today, we’ll take a look at what this new rule means for the state’s gambling industry moving forward.
Let’s get into it!
MA’s Casino Revenue Drops Considerably in August
Over the past few years, Massachusetts has developed a small, yet successful commercial casino industry. Two of the country’s largest casino companies, MGM Resorts International and Wynn Resorts, now own major casino-resorts here. These two companies have been in fierce competition to capture the state’s market.
Several new gambling venues are expected to open here over the next couple of years. Many analysts have been predicting that Massachusetts’s casino industry could eventually rival Atlantic City’s. Unfortunately, things shut down in March.
That month, casinos around the United States were forced to shut down. It wasn’t until July that state leaders in Massachusetts allowed these casinos to reopen. August marked the first full month that the state’s gaming properties were open to the public.
Recent reports show that during the month of August, the casinos in Massachusetts saw a year-on-year revenue decline of 17.4%. MGM Springfield managed to bring in $18.46 in August. Encore Boston Harbor reported $42.39 in gross gaming revenue. Plainridge Park, a slots-only casino, managed to earn just $10.17 million.
This is a significantly lower drop than many other states have been recording. It’s still a tough blow for the casino operators here, though. Many of them have been calling on lawmakers to allow more games inside their casinos.
After careful consideration, it seems that officials are agreeing to this new rule.
Another Piece of Massachusetts Casino News Has Just Come Out!
There are many factors that led to the drop in gaming revenue during August. Obviously fewer people are willing to visit a crowded casino right now. Many believe that allowing more games would help to attract new players.
This week, the Massachusetts Gaming Commission agreed to allow both the Encore Boston Harbor and MGM Springfield to begin allowing roulette again. Commission members have been pleased to see the safety measures these casinos are implementing. Roulette will now be allowed, yet occupancy levels allowed inside the casino will not change.
Loretta Lillios, interim director of the commission’s Investigations and Enforcement Bureau, spoke about this decision to the media this week.
“We have worked with them to identify health and safety measures that could be implemented with roulette and in doing so we tried to hew closely to the measures that the commission already approved for the blackjack-style games,” she said. “One of our obligations with a request like this is that we consult with the Department of Public Health … and the department raised no objections to the reintroduction of the game and it communicated that it is comfortable doing so in conjunction with the minimum safety measures outlined here.”
This is the Massachusetts casino news that gambling fans were hoping to hear. Roulette is one of the most popular casino games in the world. The reintroduction of this game will almost certainly help the state’s casinos to bring in more players and increase their revenue.
It will be interesting to see how this affects the revenue figures for the month of October. Many are now asking more about the state’s plans to legalize and regulate sports betting.
Sports Betting in MA is Unlikely to Come Until 2021
Since May of 2018, every state in the US has been able to legalize and regulate sports gambling. 24 states have now approved to launch their sports gambling industries. That does not include Massachusetts.
This state is well-known for having one of the most hardcore sports fan bases in the United States. Most feel the state would profit massively from a regulated sports betting industry. Several issues have come up getting a sports betting bill passed, though.
One bill seemed close to getting passed this year. The House gave its clear approval. The State Senate, however, decided to remove the bill at the last minute. It now seems impossible that sports betting will be made legal here in 2020.
Most feel that 2021 is the year this gets done. It’s clear that the majority of lawmakers now recognize the upside in this industry. Nearby states including New Jersey and Pennsylvania are earning a huge amount of revenue from their sports betting markets.
There’s a lot going on with the gambling industry here. We’re likely to receive more Massachusetts casino news over the next couple of months. Make sure to stay tuned for updates!
Are you excited to hear that roulette is allowed inside MA’s casinos again? Do you plan to visit any of the gambling venues here? Let us know in the comments section below!