Cumberland Times-News

December 12, 2013

Rocky Gap casino reports slight revenue drop

From Staff Reports
Cumberland Times-News

— CUMBERLAND — Rocky Gap Casino Resort’s income had reduced revenue from gaming operations last month, but money coming into the county from the casino is already having an impact on the county budget.

Income from slot machines and poker tables increased in November compared to October at Rocky Gap, while income from other table games was slightly reduced. The income information was released by the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency.

Rocky Gap had revenue of $3,328,658 from both slot machines and table games in November. The gross take per unit per day was $170.49 for slot machines, $1,456.55 for table games and $418.69 for poker games. Rocky Gap Casino Resort operates 558 slot machines and 13 table games, the agency reported. In October, those numbers were $166.84 for slot machines, $1,599.17 for other table games and $369.24 for poker tables.

Allegany County’s share of the taxes on that revenue is already being put to use. The county plans to establish a scholarship fund and will soon formalize other uses for the money coming in from the casino.

Most of the money will go to scholarships for Allegany County students enrolled at Allegany College of Maryland and Frostburg State University.

The amount of money is expected to be about $700,000 for the current fiscal year, county officials said. Commissioners expressed support for a plan dividing the scholarship money with 45 percent going to ACM Foundation and 25 percent to the FSU  Foundation.

The two foundations will decide the details of eligibility. The rest of the funds will be divided, with 10 percent each going to Allegany County fire and rescue departments and capital projects for the board of education. The remaining 10 percent will be used for Allegany County pay as you go funds for specific projects, which will help to lessen the need to borrow funds in the future, the commissioners said.

ACM enrolls more than 1,700 credit and 5,000 continuing education workforce development and professional development students from Allegany County per academic year. Of FSU’s 5,474 total students (fall 2013), 738 undergraduate students and 183 graduate students are Allegany County residents.

Statewide gaming revenue from the state’s four casinos in November was $66,840,380. That’s up from October’s statewide total of $66,378,026, agency officials said. The state’s four casinos are Hollywood Casino Perryville in Cecil County, Casino at Ocean Downs in Worcester County, Maryland Live Casino in Anne Arundel County and Rocky Gap.

In a year-to-year comparison — excluding Rocky Gap Casino Resort, which opened in May — November 2013 casino revenue increased from November 2012 by $20,409,421 or 47.4 percent, gaming officials said.

MLGCA is responsible for all matters relating to regulation of the state’s casinos. The agency oversees all internal controls, auditing, security, surveillance, background investigation, licensing and accounting procedures for the facilities. The MLGCA posts monthly financial reports on casino revenue on its website: http://gaming.mdlottery.com/.

Lakes Entertainment owns the Rocky Gap casino through a subsidiary.