With most operating at full capacity for the first time since the onset of the pandemic, Maryland’s six casinos generated a single-month record of $169,179,016 in gaming revenue during the month of March, according to the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency.
The total represents an increase of $5,916,168 (3.6%) compared to March of 2019, when the casinos produced the previous single-month record of $163,262,848. In 2020, all six casinos were closed from March 16 to June 19 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
According to a press release:
The state’s 50% capacity restriction for casinos was lifted on March 12, 2021, with two exceptions. Under local jurisdiction orders, MGM National Harbor’s capacity was raised from 25% to 50% on March 12, and Horseshoe Casino’s capacity was raised from 25% to 50% on March 26. The remaining four casinos have no capacity limitations, but not all slot machine and table game seats can be occupied because all casinos must continue to comply with social-distancing guidelines.
Casino gaming contributions to the state in March 2021 totaled $71,004,225, an increase of $3,573,114 (5.3%) compared to the $67,431,111 contributed to the state in March 2019.
Contributions to the Education Trust Fund (ETF) in March 2021 were $51,628,596, an increase of $1,038,534 (2.1%) compared to the $50,590,062 in ETF contributions during March 2019. Casino gaming revenues also support the communities and jurisdictions where the casinos are located, Maryland’s horse racing industry, and small, minority- and women-owned businesses.
In 2018, Maryland voters approved an amendment to the State Constitution to safeguard State video lottery terminal revenues for education purposes. As described in the bill and the ballot question, the supplemental funding must total at least $125 million in fiscal 2020, $250 million in fiscal 2021, and $375 million in fiscal 2022.
In all subsequent years, 100% of the gaming revenues dedicated to public education must be used for supplemental funding.
Maryland has six privately owned casinos that offer both slot machines and table games: MGM National Harbor in Prince George’s County; Live! Casino & Hotel in Anne Arundel County; Horseshoe Casino Baltimore in Baltimore City; Ocean Downs Casino in Worcester County; Hollywood Casino Perryville in Cecil County; and Rocky Gap Casino Resort in Allegany County.
Stay tuned to Conduit Street for more information.