CARBONDALE, Ill. — Data from industry experts and the state of Illinois show video gaming has generated about $785 million in state and local tax revenue since the machines were legalized four years ago.
The Southern Illinoisan (http://bit.ly/2denxMd ) reported that the number of establishments in Illinois that allow the machines has grown as well — with 5,600 businesses having machines.
Illinois Gaming Machine Operators Association officials said the state brings in more than $22 million a month in taxes from gaming that’s meant to support capital infrastructure projects.
The association’s president, Michael Gelatka, said the numbers indicate that the association is fulfilling its goal of supporting businesses and bringing in tax revenue for state and local governments.
“Our goal from the beginning with video gaming has been to make an economic difference: for our partners who draw players to their establishments, for their employees and patrons, and for our state and local governments who need tax revenue to support their services and programs,” Gelatka, said. “These numbers confirm video gaming is making that difference, and we look forward to working with policymakers in Springfield and in our communities to build on this good progress.”
The study found that video gaming tax revenue could grow to about $500 million annually if the about 150 municipalities that don’t allow video gaming decide to participate. This study did not include the city of Chicago. According to the association if Chicago had been included in the study the numbers could reach $700 million a year.
Information from: Southern Illinoisan, http://www.southernillinoisan.com