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From a Bonanza to a Blue Chip? Gambling Revenue to the States

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Publication Date: June 2008

Publisher(s): Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government

Author(s): Robert B. Ward; Nino Giguashvili; Lucy Dadayan

Topic: Government (State or regional government)
Social conditions (Leisure, recreation, and hobbies)

Keywords: Lotteries; Gambling; State Revenue

Type: Report

Abstract:

Gambling revenue plays a consistently important role in state finances, but slower growth in recent years may present new budget challenges for states. For more than two decades, states saw lotteries and casinos as a bonanza of new dollars for education and other programs. Gambling revenue is now at an all-time high, but growth is slowing due to objections about social impacts and broader economic trends.

The report shows that states vary widely in their reliance on gambling revenues. Nevada, West Virginia, and Rhode Island lead the states in the proportion of their total revenues obtained from gambling, while New York, Illinois, Florida, and New Jersey are at the top in total dollars collected.