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Video Slots Machine Profits Improve Despite Fewer Number

On July 29th, 2009, even though they would not have to do anything until 2010, legislators were already talking about possible modification in the state's limited law regarding video lottery, when the ten year-old licenses for video slot machines will be up for grabs again. If the current law regulating video lottery machines and clubs is not modified, the Lottery Commission will start the bidding process for nine thousand machines by 2010, according the lottery attorney John Melton.

The licenses would take effect on July 1st, 2011. Delegate John Doyle, a Democrat from Jefferson commented that a lot of legislators are under pressure to scale down the number of video lottery machines in West Virginia. Melton commented that could happen but the bigger bids would not make up for having a lesser number of machines operating for ten years. But he added that the number of the current video machines has slide down from 7,700 slot machines from the nine thousand video machines that are originally licensed.

But even with fewer video machines, the revenue from the limited video lottery improved in 2007-2008 to $411.6 million, which improved from $14.6 million for the previous year. Melton said that as for the reason why the 1,300 inactive video machines license have not been put into the auction block again, the Lottery Commission would need to provide the explanation for that.

Aside from that, Melton said that the profits from racetrack video lottery slide down from $74.6 million in fiscal year 2008, to $897.9 million and commented that it does not appear that there will be some improvement in the future. Melton said that the rising price of gasoline and the weakening economy are some of the reasons why the slots machines profit drop because players have less money to spend on the gambling.

The debut of video slot parlors in Pennsylvania last year has attracted a lot of customers from the state's two Northern Panhandle "racinos" although the debut of casino table games at Mountaineer and Wheeling Island racing tracks have help those establishments to compete on even ground.


Monday, 25 August 2008
Darren G. Strachan