Plainridge Park Casino Pushing For Table Games Approval
The casino business is very competitive and it significantly impacts a casino’s revenue when the operator is limited to offering selective games. Plainridge Park Casino which is a slots only casino in Massachusetts finds itself in this position as it struggle to compete with neighbouring casinos in Rhode Island.
Penn National Gaming which owns Plainridge Park is pushing for the Massachusetts Gaming Commission (MGC) to grain it approval to start offering table games.
This move has the support of local officials in Plainville and three other surrounding towns. Located on Route 1 and Interstate 495, the casino is pretty close to the Rhode Island border. The casino’s competitors are two Rhode Island casinos that offer full table games and even sports betting. This is why local officials have petitioned the state’s gaming commission for permission to expand.
In a statement, Matthew Kavanah, chairman of the Plainville Board of Selectmen said
It goes without saying that Plainridge’s ability to compete is limited by the fact that it cannot offer table games. This creates a considerable disadvantage to the Commonwealth and our community, and has already impacted revenues and may risk jobs in the future.
The casino opened its doors in 2015 when Penn National won the state’s only slot gaming license. Legally, the casino is limited to 1,250 slot games and does not have a license to offer any table games at all.
Positive Impact On Community
Though gambling opponents always point out the negative impact that a casino can have on the community, the local governments of nearby towns think highly of what Plainridge Park Casino has bough to the region. The biggest impact according to them has been economic prosperity. The establishment has generated jobs in the area, boosted revenues for small and medium businesses in the region and has helped tourism numbers increase.
Although Penn National has not formally requested for an expansion but sources say that they are concerned about their competition from across the border. The support from the local government is welcome news to them. Plainridge Park is a big earner for the state with $13.5 million in gambling revenue in October. The casino gives 49 percent of its gambling revenue to the state, with the current total standing at $271 million since it opened its doors.
When Massachusetts legalized casino gambling in 2011, Rhode Island responded by allowing table games at the Twin River Casino in Lincoln and opening a new one in Tiverton, which is just 40 miles away from Plainridge Park Casino. MGC will have to make a decision shortly on whether it will grant Plainridge Park a table games license.
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