Gambling revenue plays a consistently important role in state finances, but slower growth in recent years may present new budget challenges for states, according to a new Rockefeller Institute report. States vary widely in their reliance on gambling revenue, the report finds. Read From a Bonanza to a Blue Chip? Gambling Revenue to the States.
"For more than two decades, states saw lotteries and casinos as a bonanza of new dollars for education and other programs," Institute researchers write. "Gambling revenue is now at an all-time high, but growth is slowing due to objections about social impacts and broader economic trends. From a fiscal perspective, state-sponsored gambling now resembles a blue-chip stock — reliably generating large amounts of cash, but no longer promising dramatic growth in revenue."
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.
The Rockefeller Institute of Government is the public-policy research arm of the State University of New York.