Mississippi Casino Revenues Down But Not From Oil SpillBy Rhonda Miller | Published 06 May 2011 04:30pm |
Casino revenues are down across Mississippi. MPB’s Rhonda Miller reports they’re not blaming it on the oil spill.
The numbers for the first quarter of 2011 show Mississippi casino revenues down three percent from last year. Executive Director of the Mississippi Gaming Commission Larry Gregory said the challenges have been going on for years.
"You know, I think we have suffered more from Katrina and the economic downturn than the oil spill," Gregory said. "The oil spill was little bump in the road. I think we’ve recovered from that. We didn’t really suffer last year, so much. We had hotel rooms they were still gambling."
Kim Fritz is Interim Executive Director of the Mississippi Casino Operators Association. Fritz said a glimmer of hope on the coast isn’t enough to get excited about.
"The first quarter gaming revenues here on the Gulf Coast were 1.1 percent gain. But we did lose in the river counties and to me that’s basically flat," Fritz said.
Mississippi casinos employ 25,000 people – about one-third of all the tourism jobs in the state. Mary Beth Wilkerson is Director of Tourism for the Mississippi Development Authority. She says, overall, tourism is showing signs of recovery.
"Statewide we’re seeing an uptick in the tourism industry, about 3 to 6 percent increase across the board for the industry. That's in visitor expenditures, general tax revenue that's coming in from the tourist industry." Wilkerson said.
But with floods causing casinos along the Mississippi River to shut down, Wilkerson said it’s going to take a while to know the impact of this latest disaster on tourism.
BACK TO TOP
CommentsMPB will not tolerate obscenities, threats/personal attacks, hate speech, material that is ethnically or racially offensive, abusive comments, comments off topic and spam, to name a few. You can see a complete list of the MPB guidelines by viewing our terms of service. If you spot a comment you think violates these guidelines, report it to the moderators by clicking "x" next to the comment, then "report”. MPB reserves the right to adjust these guidelines. If you have a suggestion, please contact us.
BACK TO TOP