Massachusetts Gaming Revenue Falls Slightly In August

Written By Justin Russo on September 28, 2021

Gross gaming revenue from the three Massachusetts casinos fell slightly in August. After experiencing a surge in July, the revenue dipped to $92 million August.

Both the Encore Boston Harbor and the Plainridge Park Casino were within $1 million of their July totals, while MGM Springfield’s revenue fell by $1.9 million.

Revenues down but not worrisome

Breaking the revenue down even further, the lead revenue generator was the Encore Boston Harbor, bringing in $57.9 million in gross gaming revenue in August. Behind the Encore came the MGM Springfield, which generated $21.9 million in revenue, and finally the Plainridge Park Casino, which brought in $12.7 million.

Despite revenues falling from their July totals, gaming revenues are still on an overall upward trend from the beginning of the year, largely due to pandemic restrictions being loosened by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission in late May.

July and August represent the only two months this year that gross revenue surpassed $90 million, with July seeing a peak of $96 million. This is certainly a welcome site for the commission given that the year started slowly with just $58 million in revenue in January.

August’s revenue also closely coincides with the revenue from the last pre-pandemic August in 2019. That was $86 million, and it’s another reason for optimism despite the revenue dip.

Where does the money go?

The revenues generated by the three Massachusetts casinos benefit several public funds and services in the state through the taxes that are collected by the Commonwealth.

The Encore Boston Harbor and MGM Springfield are classified as Category One resort-casinos and are taxed on 25% of their total gaming revenue. In August, this translated to $14 million and $5 million in taxes from the two casinos, respectively.

The money from taxes on Category One facilities is split up into 12 destinations. Most notably, 20% of the taxes goes to local aid, 15% goes to the transportation infrastructure fund, and 14% goes to the education fund.

On the other hand, the Plainridge Park Casino is listed as a slots facility, which is included in Category Two. It doesn’t have table games like the other two casinos, and has a 49% tax on just its slots, which generated $6 million for the state in August.

The tax money from Category Two facilities only goes to two different places, with 82% going to local aid and the other 18% going to the Race Horse Development Fund.

In total, the casinos have generated $869 million in taxes since their respective openings, and with revenues climbing due to loosening restrictions, 2022 is set up to be the most profitable year yet for the state and its casinos.

Photo by AP / Charles Krupa
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Justin Russo

Now a freelance journalist, Justin Russo graduated from UNLV with a degree in journalism. He has covered both professional and collegiate sports in Las Vegas for UNLV's student-run radio station and newspaper, while also serving as a sports betting intern at ESPN.

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