Every state that houses land-based casinos within its borders took a major hit the past few months. The ongoing situation closed down most gaming venues in early to mid-March except for legal online gambling sites. The rest of that month along with April and May came up empty as far as gaming revenue.
As one of the biggest gaming states in the US, Nevada casinos started to reopen their doors in early June even though Nevada online sports betting was still an option with sportsbooks such as BetMGM, William Hill and Caesars Sports. New Jersey is another big casino gambling state with online casinos but where the Atlantic City closures carried into the month of July.
Maryland is not known as one of the bigger casino gambling states with six land-based properties. Yet, the negative impacts of shuttering their doors have taken their toll. According to a recent post on the Baltimore Sun website, the total loss in casino revenue was more than 27 percent against the previous fiscal year.
State gaming authorities tallied up the damage from the extended shutdown and released the figures for the first half of the year on July 6.
The total tax revenue generated from the state’s six casinos was $529 million over the past fiscal year. This was $194.3 million less compared to the same time frame last year. This loss cut deep into the state’s budget.
Casino money has been used to subsidize an education-based trust fund. It is also used to help the local communities where casinos are present. Another portion of these tax funds are earmarked for Maryland’s horse racing industry and Maryland online sports betting.
Gov. Larry Hogan lifted the ban on casino operations on June 19. There were some delays in reopening the doors, most notably Baltimore’s Horseshoe Casino. The net result was $34.9 million in total casino revenue for the month of June. This represents a 75 percent decline against June, 2019. That figure was $142.8 million.
Maryland Live! Casino & Hotel was ready to go on June 19, opening its doors to members. The delay in opening to the general public lasted another 10 days. That casino still managed to generate $15.9 million in total gaming revenue. This represented almost half of the state’s total casino take.
The Horseshoe Casino finally opened to members on June 26. The opening to the public took place two days later. In that short window of operation, this casino took in $2.6 million for the month.
During their last full month of operations, which was February, these six casinos generated more than $150 million in gaming revenue combined.
Other casino properties in Maryland include:
- MGM National Harbor
- Hollywood Casino Perryville
- Rocky Gap Casino Resort
- Ocean Downs
Live! Casino & Hotel remains the biggest in the state in terms of annual gaming revenue followed by Baltimore’s Horseshoe. National Harbor is the newest venue, first opening in 2017. Ocean Downs also offers live horse racing as the state’s only racetrack and casino facility.
One of the main things that hurt overall gaming revenue during the shutdown was the lack of online casino gambling. The neighboring state of Pennsylvania and nearby New Jersey set online casino records while their land-based casinos sat idle.