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Key Findings of the National Gambling Impact Study Commission (1997-99)
“Most of [our] associates were unemployed or under-employed until gaming came to our area. Grand Casino gave them the opportunity to work and to support their families with dignity.”
– Beth Daniel, associate relations manager, Grand Casino Tunica (Miss.), Washington, D.C., meeting, Aug. 20, 1997
“Before I was hired … I spent nine months receiving unemployment benefits, after being laid off by a Fortune 500 restaurant company. … As it turns out, losing my former job and coming to work for Hollywood Casino Aurora, after meeting my wife, is probably the best thing that has ever happened to me. … I now manage ten supervisors with an hourly staff of about 120 people overall. I’m well paid. I get good health benefits, including medical and dental insurance. … Hollywood Casino has been responsible for change in Aurora and the change has been positive. It has also changed my life for the better.”
– Testimony of Rick Adams, food and beverage manager, Hollywood Casino Aurora (Ill.) Chicago site visit, May 20, 1998
“Over the past five years we have grown from about one million in sales to about three and a half million. We have added two additional routes and employed an additional 20 people. Most of our recent growth has been the result of the boats.”
– Testimony of Mario DeBenedetti, owner, Milano Baking Company, Joliet, Ill., Chicago site visit, May 20, 1998
“Since working in the casino industry, I have…been able to purchase two homes. My husband, who also worked in the casino industry for ten years, left the industry…and now successfully owns and operates his own business. I believe that if not for our dealings in Atlantic City, we would not have accomplished all that we have been able to do.”
– National Gambling Impact Study Commission, Testimony of Kim Dolan, Washington, D.C., meeting, Aug. 20, 1997
“[W]hen I look at the benefits that we get from casino gaming and when I walk and I see a park that’s being rejuvenated that was a place where you couldn’t walk through because you might get in trouble, when I see this park being rejuvenated, a slide for children to go and play and a jogging path for those of us who have weight problems to walk, then I say, hey — and what I’ve said to the casino industry that you ought to have a sign, at every place you ought to say your casino dollars at work because let me tell you, the casino dollars at work in Gary, Indiana are going to change that city in the way no other source of revenue could make that change.”
– National Gambling Impact Study Commission, Testimony of Indiana state Sen. Earline Rogers, Chicago site visit, May 20, 1998
TA B L E O F C O N T E N T S
I. II. INTRODUCTION . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 ECONOMIC IMPACT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .2 Executive Summary Impact of Gaming on the Nat ional Economy Economic Impact of Gaming in Sp ec ific Gaming Jur is dict ions Gaming Industr y as an Eng ine of Economic Grow th III. SOCIAL IMPACT . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .11 Executive Summary Soc ial Impact of Gaming in the United States Soc ial Impact of Gaming in Sp ec ific Gaming Jur is dict ions Measur ing Social Impacts Gaming and Crime Gaming and Bankruptcy I V. R E G U L AT I O N . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 8 Executive Summary Regulation and the Gaming Industr y Competition Between States V. DISORDERED GAMBLING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .24 Executive Summary A Complex Phenomenon Pre valence of Disordered Gambling Research and Pre vention Tr e a t m e n t VI. RESPONSIBLE GAMING . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .29 Executive Summary C r e d i t P r a c t i c e s , AT M U s a g e a n d R e l a t e d P o l i c i e s Responsible Gaming Prog rams in Gaming Jur is dict ions Industr y Programs and Practices VII. CONCLUSION VIII. REFERENCES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .36 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .38
The National Gambling Impact Study Commission (NGISC) was established in 1996 by an act of Congress to conduct a comprehensive legal and factual study of gambling in the United States. In testimony at the first meeting of the NGISC on June 20, 1997, U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf laid out his charge to the panel: The task before you is as important as it is enormous. But your goal is really very simple. Today when a community, a town, a city, or even a state is considering the pros and cons of letting some kind of gambling activity start up, they have nowhere to go to obtain reliable and factual and unbiased answers to their questions. Your job is merely to make that information easily available to them. That’s it.1 Members of the commission met 17 times between June 1997 and June 1999 and traveled from coast to coast to seek the “reliable and factual and unbiased” information Rep. Wolf alluded to in his testimony. Hundreds of witnesses testified before the commission, resulting in many hundreds of pages of transcribed material. The following document is a review of information compiled from this testimony, as well as documents submitted to the commission for review. This report tells a uniquely American success story. It tells of hundreds of thousands of Americans who have found productive livelihoods working for the gaming industry. It tells of people who have made their way from welfare to work and others who have used the prosperity brought to their communities by the gaming industry to grow their own businesses. It tells of cities and towns that have been lifted out of dire straits and rebuilt, with gaming as part of the economic mix. It tells of good corporate citizens who have taken specific action to address certain economic and social needs. Looking again at the words of Rep. Wolf as he laid out the work plan for the commission: What I do ask…and what America demands of you, is to be open-minded, fair and undaunted in the pursuit of knowledge based on solid research….2 In that spirit, this document presents facts, not anecdote. It presents information, not propaganda. It presents a distillation of the solid research Rep. Wolf asked the commission to pursue. This report offers “reliable and factual and unbiased answers” to those questions that will inform “a community, a town, a city, or even a state…considering the pros and cons of letting some kind of gambling activity start up.”3 In answer to the question, “What is our work here?” Commission Chairwoman Kay Coles James stated, “…to do what the American people, through their elected representatives in Congress, have asked us to do, and that is to conduct a comprehensive, factual, and legal study of the social and economic impact of legalized gambling.”4 Any such study of the social and economic impact of legalized gambling should include a full, complete and honest consideration of the information presented within this report.
National Gambling Impact Study Commission, Testimony of U.S. Rep. Frank Wolf, Washington, D.C., meeting, June 20, 1997. 2 Ibid. 3 Ibid. 4 National Gambling Impact Study Commission, Remarks of Kay Coles James, Washington, D.C., meeting, Aug. 19, 1997.
Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association
1998. community leaders and others tells of the economic benefits gaming has brought to the nation. not every casino will live up to expectations. in looking at 27 of them.. 167. who sponsored them. He reported: [M]y overall conclusion…is that the aggregate direct and indirect regional economic impacts of the construction. only two of the 27 came out with overall negative impacts. and eight of the 27.6 Rose further noted that: The bottom line…is that a new casino of even limited attractiveness. and redevelopment. 1997. And the bottom-line of these studies. ten of the 17 (sic) studies concluded that the impacts were significantly positive. Fahrenkopf. Testimony of Frank J. Sept. placed in a market that is not already saturated will yield positive economic benefits on net to its host economy. 11. Because of the experience of the last four or five years in a number of states that are new venues. 19. 5 2 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association . the…economic impacts of gaming on state and local communities can now be examined not by theory but by the actual results reflected in independently derived statistical data of state and local governments across the country. Testimony from countless public officials. 166. Impact of Gaming on the Nat ional Economy Adam Rose of Pennsylvania State University conducted a study of the economic impact of gambling for the NGISC. New Orleans site visit.7 Discussing his methodology. I might add.8 National Gambling Impact Study Commission.”5 The following testimony and research submitted to the NGISC documents that the commercial casino industry is an engine of economic growth. what the author’s credentials were. at the same time. Rose told the commission: I read over 100 studies in compiling my report and gave a separate itemized evaluation of 27 of those as to about 20 important characteristics dealing with their findings. told the commission on Aug. 1998. Testimony of Adam Rose. 11. 19. 8 Ibid. almost a third. Broader negative impacts are offset by some longer-term positive impacts from tax revenue and subsequent spending on education. Aug. most markets are not yet saturated. Jr. 7 Ibid. 161. Broader economic costs are not trivial but they do not cancel out the more conventional gains. infrastructure. operation and taxation of casinos are significantly positive. suggested that the impacts would be highly positive.. Washington. as well as individual cities and towns. seven of the 27 studies came out with neutral impacts including some very slightly negative or very slightly positive. ECONOMIC IMPACT Executive Summary As Frank Fahrenkopf. 6 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. 1997.C. related to who the authors were. “[E]conomic models or theories can…be evaluated through the prism of experience. meeting. president and CEO of the American Gaming Association (AGA).II. Rose presented his findings at a commission hearing on Sept. D.
we were looking for development of hotels and that type of thing to create a property tax base in the area. officials from a variety of gaming jurisdictions across the country testified and submitted research to the NGISC. Indiana state Sen. Our population which once grew to 190. Hoosiers repealed the gaming ban. these Midwestern states legalized gambling. For more than 15 years Northwest Indiana suffered. Despite those warnings that a yes vote would allow casino gaming. Testimony of Indiana state Sen.Economic Impact of Gaming in Sp ec ific Gaming Jur is dict ions To illustrate the economic impact of gaming at the state and local levels. Testimony of Bettendorf. So as a part of that.000 jobs.500. Our attempts to recruit major businesses to locate in Northwest Indiana were not successful. in the late 1980’s as a response to an economic downturn in the area at that point in time. 1998.000 to 7.9 Mayor Ann Hutchinson of Bettendorf. Not one was located in Northwest Indiana. Local leaders then were looking to an alternative to try to bring back some of the economic development in the area. The initial legislation in the State of Iowa was very strong in trying to bring back economic development…and to create land based development in the area. In January of 1989 we. of course. the state of Indiana investigated our local public assistance officials.10 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. As in other jurisdictions. along with the state run lottery. In November of 1989. the impetus for legalization was economic development. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 9 3 . Indiana. and gambling seemed to be a natural part because it is such a part of the history in the lower Mississippi River. Instead of offering the help necessary to meet this disaster. An opportunity was afforded to us in 1988 when the voters of the state of Indiana overwhelmingly repealed the state constitutional ban on lotteries. The following is a state-by-state breakdown of the evidence presented. Chicago site visit. offered the following explanation for the legalization of gaming in Iowa: The initiative for Iowa’s legislation on riverboat gambling actually came out of the Quad Cities area of which Bettendorf is a part. May 20. The Quad Cities was noted as a farming and construction equipment manufacturing center and always considered itself recession-proof until it hit the recession of the mid-1980’s.000 jobs in the area. At that point in time we lost 25. 10 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. Mayor Ann Hutchinson. and they looked toward tourism. often spending hundreds of thousands of dollars for jobs. Indiana. and ours was land based casinos. when we found ourselves championing our economic development successes at a ribbon cutting for a McDonald's restaurant in Gary. Earline Rogers described the history of legalization in Indiana to the commission: In the late 1970’s this region (Northwest Indiana) lost 70. 1998. Revenue sharing had become a mainstay in my community.000. fell to below 135. the city of Gary and I as the author. United States Steel alone cut its work force from 25. introduced the first bill that would allow for casino gaming in Gary. The federal government cut back programs intended to help local communities. Chicago site visit. Iowa. Illinois. Gary conducted its own referendum on land based casinos and 60 percent of the voters approved land based casinos. Iowa and Missouri Between 1990 and 1994. Opponents of gaming warned voters that repealing the ban on lotteries would allow pari-mutuel and casino gaming. Earline Rogers. May 20. is our greatest natural resource in that area for tourism.000. We knew something different had to be done. And the Mississippi River. Iowa. The state of Indiana spent millions of dollars luring major manufacturing operations to Indiana.
Volume 2: Micro Study (Washington.: American Gaming Association. May 20. Ill. 14 Arthur Andersen. • Each dollar of direct income provided to employees in the casino industry generates about $1. 1998). A study of the impact of riverboat gaming on the Illinois economy in 1995 found that: • Each dollar expended by the casino operations generated an additional 72 cents worth of activity elsewhere in the state’s economy. Local communities hosting riverboat casinos have. benefited from the experience with new revenues and infrastructure and in some instances a new sense of optimism about their economic future. Regional Economics Applications Laboratory (REAL).50 of additional income in the state. executive summary. 1998 Positive Impact Report (Indianapolis. April 3. 1998). Those seeking to be operators in the midwest have been subjected to rigorous scrutiny. 5-6. 1998.13 The Iowa Riverboat Industry • Generated $653 million in revenues in 1996. • Employed 11. • Employed more than 12. Economic Impacts of Casino Gaming in the United States. 1996). • Each job created by the casino industry generates another 0. described how the introduction of casino gaming had affected the economies of four states in the Midwest: In my personal view. Ind. 12 11 4 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association .Michael Belletire.14 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. Growing with Indiana.100 people in 1997.12 The Indiana Riverboat Industry According to the Casino Association of Indiana’s Growing with Indiana.300 people in 1998 and paid more than $300 million in wages and benefits. Testimony of Michael Belletire. • Paid almost $261 million in taxes in 1997. New jobs. The Impact of Riverboat Casino Gambling on the Illinois Economy 1995 (Urbana. administrator for the Illinois Gaming Board. • Employed 6. executive summary. 13 Casino Association of Indiana. Chicago site visit. D.70 jobs in the economy. Safe and popular attractions have been built with meaningful capital investments.1 billion in revenues in 1996. • Paid $370 million in state gaming taxes in 1998. in the main.11 Belletire’s observations about the contributions of casino gaming are confirmed by the following information developed by the Coalition of Midwestern Riverboats: The Illinois Riverboat Industry • Generated more than $1.000 people in 1997.: Casino Association of Indiana. the riverboat industry in that state: • Generated $960 million in revenues in 1997. • Paid more than $173 million in taxes in 1997. with decent wages and fringe benefits.C.: University of Illinois. have been created. the experiment with casino gambling in the midwest states has been generally positive.
this amount represents about 8 percent of the total funding for the Missouri school foundation formula and approximately 49 percent of the new funding for the foundation formula over the previous year. sales. As this tax money was spent and re-spent. Leven and Phares found that: In 1997 the casino gaming industry…directly and indirectly generated more than three-quarters of a billion dollars worth of new spending in the state’s economy. State and local governments received over $225 million in new tax revenues. federal and social security taxes.000 new jobs were added to the economy. with an additional $20 million in various other taxes paid.000 people in 1997. April 1998). as a result of the admission fee and other taxes paid by casinos. and Don Phares. • Paid $167 million in taxes in 1997. Louis: Civic Progress. The resulting funds are small relative to the total Missouri state budget and even small compared to big city budgets. casino revenues have made a major difference in their fiscal positions. depreciation. but for small cities with gaming.17 The study further found that: The impact of gaming on Missouri state and local government has been somewhat concentrated. About $167 million went to state and local governments: of this amount. the one-dollar local share of admission fees. professor of economics and public policy at the University of Missouri-St. and other revenues. Charles Leven. goes out of state as interest payments. Louis to conduct a study of the economic impact of gaming in Missouri. The Economic Impact of Gaming in Missouri (St. it too had a ripple effect throughout the economy. The rest goes to pay for casino operating expenses ($332 million) and taxes to state and local governments ($167 million). 17 Ibid. The $93 million going to the state of Missouri from the 18 percent tax on gaming has gone entirely to education — primarily K-12 education. Louis. For 1996.The Missouri Riverboat Industry • Generated more than $571 million in revenues in 1996. personal income grew by over $500 million.16 The Leven-Phares study also revealed that: Of the $589 million spent at casinos for gaming and nongaming purchases. were commissioned by Civic Progress of St. Because of casino gaming. as the money spent on casino operations was spent and re-spent in the state. Charles Leven and Don Phares. reserves. executive summary. resulting in an additional $179 million of indirectly induced spending. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 15 16 5 .15 In 1997. In their study submitted to the NGISC. such as property. professor emeritus of economics at Washington University. Other state revenues also have risen by $29 million. 18 Ibid. and earning taxes. Taxes to local government have come from the 2 percent gaming tax. only about $90 million or 15 percent.18 Information compiled from numerous sources by the Coalition of Midwestern Riverboats. $147 million came from the 20 percent tax on net gaming receipts (18 percent goes for education) and the $2 admission fee. $277 million of additional business volume was generated indirectly by purchases of inputs and spending of labor income. • Employed more than 12. or profits (although most casinos were not profitable in 1996). Also. Almost 18. Of casino operating expenses about $114 million went for wages and the rest ($218 million) for other expenses.
site visit. We were experiencing no growth at all and all of the equipment that the town owned was old and worn out. even those choosing never to cross the threshold of Casino Magic. There was (sic) very few jobs that had good insurance packages.. We had a 7 percent unemployment rate. The casinos came to Tunica back in ’92 and it seemed like since then everything has changed.. City employees took 10 percent pay cuts and city services suffered as our roads and infrastructure began to crumble. 1998. and the first casino opened its doors in August 1992. Then we’d have to turn right back around and pay off the loan with the taxes we collected in January and February.J. Miss. 1998. 1998.. We had high taxes and very low revenue. 21 National Gambling Impact Study Commission.19 Mayor Bobby Williams of Tunica testified that: We had high unemployment and low wages. Mayor A. Mayor Bob Short.. Testimony of Gulfport. 155-56. 161. The town was… really going down. Mayor Bobby Williams. 19 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. All of that changed in 1992 when a majority of the citizens of our community approved dockside gaming. Testimony of Tunica. 10. Biloxi. The ones that was (sic) staying open was (sic) hoping that gaming would come along. who we depended on to visit us each winter. They couldn’t pay their water bills.. Biloxi. Sept. Louis told the commission: Our daily lifestyle has benefited greatly from the revenues generated by gaming. Miss. We had hotels in bankruptcy. site visit. Nine years ago. 20 National Gambling Impact Study Commission.. Miss. providing a direct benefit of this new industry for all our residents. I was a member of the city council and I could tell you firsthand this was a disaster for city government. Highlights of our accomplishments include the following: City property taxes were reduced by 85 percent. We were a tourist town with no tourists. Testimony of Biloxi. Biloxi. 10. A renewed atmosphere for new business development and existing business expansion has evolved.J. health benefits or both members of the family working. 10. We lost a large section of the tourist trade from our area. Miss. Miss. We were having to borrow money on next year’s property taxes to pay this year’s bills. water lines were too small. Holloway of Biloxi explained that: Our decline began in the 80’s when the bottom fell out of the oil industry in Louisiana and Texas. 148-49. site visit. We were barely meeting the city payroll. 6 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association .20 Mayor Bob Short described the state of the economy in Gulfport prior to the advent of gaming: Our businesses were closing. Our sewer lines were dilapidated. The golfers. Sept. Miss.21 Mayor Eddy Favre of Bay St. We had high welfare and low economy. Mayors of four different cities in Mississippi explained how economic considerations drove the legalization of gaming: Mayor A. Sales tax revenues have increased by 100 percent since the opening of Casino Magic in 1992. Sept. Holloway. The declining tax revenue meant we were six to nine months behind paying our bills.Mississippi Riverboat gaming was approved in 1990. were finding better accommodations in other places. This is all before gaming.
500 people. 271-72.. 5-7. • Purchased almost $104 million in food and beverages from local vendors in 1997.: Nevada Commission on Tourism. Made In Nevada: Creating Pride. the state would have 31 casinos. has (sic) been added to what was a depressed job market in the 1980s. • The industry had a direct annual payroll of approximately $5. According to Gov. Kirk Fordice. Miss. • For every 10 jobs directly stemming from the hospitality industry. most with income and benefits never before available. The Mississippi Miracle: How The State With The Worst Odds Ended Up With The Winning Hand (Gulfport. Nevada’s hospitality/gaming industry directly employed 307. September 1998). About 25 to 30 percent of what I like to call the Mississippi Miracle is due to casino gaming. and there’s no doubt it is attributed in part to the gaming industry. 23 Harrison County Development Commission. making Mississippi the third-largest gaming jurisdiction in the United States. which authorized casinos in 1931. 24 Ibid. site visit. state and local taxes from Nevada’s gaming industry is estimated to be $2. Mayor Eddy Favre. roughly 35 percent of Nevada’s work force.2 billion annually.22 With the opening of Beau Rivage in February 1999.: Harrison County Development Commission. hotels. 10. • The total contribution to federal. According to the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and Nevada Commission on Tourism: • Visitors made 42. the Harrison County Development Commission reports that the state’s gaming industry: • Generated in excess of $2 billion in 1998. • Augments nearly every facet of the state budget through gaming tax revenues.Over 1500 direct and indirect job opportunities.7 billion in FY 1996. • In 1997. following 12 straight months of record activity. • Contributed more than $1 billion in additional tax revenues as a result of gaming and related development since 1992. golf courses. Miss. statewide gross gaming revenues were $7. 25 Nevada Commission on Tourism.3 billion to personal incomes in the state. retail outlets. Miss. Nev. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 22 7 . • Invested more than $7 billion in construction of casinos. Biloxi. • Generates more than 54. Gaming. “The State of Mississippi is now a national leader in economic recovery.25 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. representing 25 percent of all wages paid statewide..2 million trips to the state in 1997. Testimony of Bay St.000 jobs and an annual payroll of $1. The industry is a source of tremendous economic development for the state. 1998). • In FY 1997.24 Nevada No state has had legalized gambling longer than Nevada. 1998. and was directly and indirectly responsible for 60 percent of the statewide employment total as of 1995. Opportunity and Hope in the Silver State (Carson City.8 billion. Louis. parking structures and other amenities.”23 In The Mississippi Miracle: How The State With The Worst Odds Ended Up With The Winning Hand. • Produced 10 percent of the state’s annual budget in 1998 — approximately $160 million in gaming tax collections and $140 million in new sales and income taxes. Sept. spending $25 billion. roughly seven additional jobs are created elsewhere in the state’s economy.1 billion through direct and indirect employment. single-handedly adding $10.
000 companies across the United States in 1996.79 billion in 1996. site visit. and this had a devastating impact to the shore area. everything changed. Atlantic City. • Provides 50. 30 New Jersey Casino Control Commission.J.S. • Generated $717 million for redevelopment projects in Atlantic City (including investments in low and moderate income housing. as reported by the New Jersey Casino Control Commission. • Spent $1. Testimony of U.. an employer who pays good wages and offers better than average benefits and a good neighbor in the community.S.28 As U. gaming has been a great success story. 17. A Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission. • Paid revenue taxes totaling $303. 1998. Many hotels were having financial difficulties and were forced into bankruptcy and ultimately closed..2 million in 1996. N. was hurting. Testimony of Peter Verniero. Jan. That was the day New Jersey voters passed a referendum legalizing casino gaming in Atlantic City. 1998. The city was in desperate need of help. one of the East Coast’s premier resorts at the turn of the century.C. 29 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. you are going to find that the casino segment of the gaming industry. is a good employer. Testimony of U. Casino Gambling In New Jersey: A Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission (Atlantic City. Overall.In testimony before the commission.J. Atlantic City. D. 1976. the first casinos opened two years later. Sen.000 indirect jobs with wages of almost $1 billion in 1994. New Jersey Casino Control Commission. 28 27 8 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association .000 full and part-time jobs with a payroll exceeding $1 billion before fringe benefits. 19. Sen. Sen. meeting. Richard Bryan of Nevada summarized the impact of gaming on the state: For us in Nevada. a high job potential employer. 21. Verniero testified that: Prior to the introduction of gaming.26 New Jersey A statewide referendum authorized gaming for Atlantic City in 1976. Aug. N.” casino gaming in New Jersey has generated an investment of approximately $6 billion during the past 20 years.27 Sometimes referred to as “the experiment. • Contributed to the creation of another 48. site visit. Tourists were no longer coming to this seaside town. Casino gaming saved Atlantic City and its people.”29 The New Jersey Casino Control Commission reports that the gaming industry: • Created gross casino gaming revenues of $3. • Expects to invest $5 billion or more for the development of casino hotel facilities during the next several years. U. On November 2. “It cannot be overstated and it cannot be said enough. National Gambling Impact Study Commission. 1997. Jan. 21.5 billion with more than 8.30 26 National Gambling Impact Study Commission.54 billion on goods and services with more than 3.: New Jersey Casino Control Commission. Robert Torricelli. Robert Torricelli stated in testimony before the NGISC. historic restoration projects and nonprofit facility improvement) as well as an additional $69 million for projects statewide since 1984 through contributions to the Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA). New Jersey Attorney General Peter Verniero presented a brief history of gaming in New Jersey to the commission.S. particularly that portion involved in large scale resort operations and tourist destinations. January 1998).400 companies in New Jersey and almost $2.S. Washington. Sen. N.J.. Richard Bryan. Atlantic City.
hardware stores. We have new bowling alleys opening up. 95.. professor at Pennsylvania State University. some as high as $1.32 Tom Thanas. “The $7 billion renaissance is creating a second wave of growth for the city. 10. Adam Rose.000 people the last weekend in May for a national event for racing…. May 20. 11. Those are all discretionary dollars that are staying in the city of Joliet and that our residents are able to spend on those activities. all of which is helping to diversify the Mississippi economy: hotel. A Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission. For example. 33 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. corporation counsel/city attorney for Joliet. but in most cases a casino is much more like a factory and can be an engine of regional growth.33 On Sept. Miss.Gaming Industr y as an Eng ine of Economic Grow th Testimony and reports presented to the NGISC also refuted claims from gambling opponents that casino gaming creates a “substitution effect” — that the industry takes from other established businesses without creating growth of its own within the economy. A week from Friday we have the Route 66 raceway which will attract 130. Testimony of Tom Thanas. retail stores. A related question is: How large is the spending substitution effect of casino gambling of resident patrons on site. legalized casinos in Mississippi have spawned a variety of secondary growth. golf courses. the New Jersey Casino Control Commission’s Casino Gambling in New Jersey: A Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission reported that Atlantic City is experiencing a multibillion-dollar redevelopment renaissance as a result of the gaming industry and this is transforming the area into a major meeting destination.6 billion. We have multi-plex theatres opening up. related food services. but I found more of the credible studies to come up with estimates between 35 to 75 percent for casinos that serve a mix of tourists and residents. Chicago site visit. 1998. 1998. Ill. retail — realtor services. utilities services. executive director of the Mississippi Department of Economic and Community Development. noted: From an economic development perspective. at an NGISC hearing in New Orleans. testified: What’s happened to the discretionary dollars of our residents? I know you’ll hear later on that riverboat gaming companies cannibalize the local economy. or how much does the spending simply displace other local spending in the area? More recently there have been a rash of studies that suggest that substitution effect can be as high as 100 percent or more. 93. 31 32 New Jersey Casino Control Commission. site visit. We have more industries and corporations looking at the State of Mississippi than we ever have in (our) history. And I also add home building. Biloxi. restaurants. I’m talking about projects exceeding $400 million in investment.. printing companies. Testimony of Jimmy Heidel. And the answer hinges on characteristics of individual facilities. media advertising. 1998. dry cleaners and laundries and a variety of other recreational and entertainment options. 19. National Gambling Impact Study Commission. We have bookstores opening up. testified: Is a casino more like a factory or a restaurant? And this is a common analogy used in the literature in this area.”31 In testimony presented to the commission. and the key issue is whether a casino serves an external market so that it can bring new money into an area rather than just re-circulating dollars that are already there. Jimmy Heidel. Sept. That’s not the case in Joliet. We have golf courses opening up. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 9 . and I’m not talking about small projects.
The Mississippi Miracle. and an additional 10 percent increase is planned in the Fiscal Year 1999 budget. New Jersey Casino Control Commission. 162-63.36 34 35 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. where a percentage of revenues from casino gaming properties have been earmarked for revitalization and development projects within the city and across the state of New Jersey.312. 11. and new ones are moving to the state.5 percent of gross revenue to the Casino Revenue Fund.261 1995: $15. The catalyst for this widespread recovery can be traced back to the well-planned and well-regulated arrival of the gaming industry. 36 Harrison County Development Commission. As a result. New Orleans site visit. near the new Convention Center. 7. Atlantic City Casino Parking Fee Revenues Collected 1994: $14. CRDA has committed $717 million to projects for the redevelopment of Atlantic City and an additional $69 million for projects throughout the state. Since its creation in 1984.34 Further arguing against the “substitution theory” is the evidence of economic growth that has been generated by the practice of “earmarking” gaming revenues for development projects.093 1996: $15. Testimony of Adam Rose.Also. The Atlantic City Casino Parking Fee was authorized in 1993. In 1997 alone. Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission.473. 1998. funding for education has increased by 32 percent. former residents are returning home.567. As an example. The fees collected are placed in a special fund held by the State Treasurer. As reported by the New Jersey Casino Control Commission: The Casino Reinvestment Development Authority (CRDA) is an independent authority…created to authorize the expenditure of casino reinvestment funds in Atlantic City and other urban-aid municipalities throughout the state. beautification and other road improvements… housing construction and restoration…. 5. Projects have included street widening. Casino parking facilities are required to impose a minimum charge of $2. Each casino has the option to invest 1. for use by the CRDA to finance public improvements in the Atlantic City area. 10 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association . Typical of this practice is that found in Atlantic City. 18-19. except for charitable gaming. Sept. Over 128 Fortune 500 companies have rediscovered Mississippi and the economic benefits of doing business here. highway construction totaled over $220 million. As reported in The Mississippi Miracle: How The State With The Worst Odds Ended Up With The Winning Hand: Since their inception. Those funds are currently being used to finance development of Atlantic City’s corridor. gaming taxes have been used to augment nearly every facet of the state budget.25 percent of its gross revenue for CRDA-approved redevelopment projects or pay an additional 2. the question arises: How large is the substitution effect with respect to other gambling activities? And the answer here is that the substitution effect is rather low.93035 The “Mississippi Miracle” also has been fueled by “earmarked” tax revenues.
unequivocally. businesses owned by women and minorities benefit from procurement by casinos. Gaming companies also provide superior job benefits. The casino gaming industry has improved the lives of its employees and their families by elevating work force job skill levels with special education and training programs. providing tens of thousands of jobs to those formerly on welfare or receiving unemployment benefits. The same studies showed that bankruptcy is no more prevalent in gaming communities than in non-gaming communities. which consistently exceeds rates set by government authorities for purchasing from this sector. crime often decreases after gaming arrives. In fact.III. The panel’s research indicated that crime does not increase with the advent of this activity in a community. Furthermore. tax revenues and commercial development. that this business is a net positive for the American people as a generator of jobs. positive force in American life. Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) payments have decreased appreciably in gaming communities. such as top-notch health care and day care programs. Testimony also revealed the casino profession has been a major contributor to charitable organizations throughout the country. In the process. which are too often lost in discussions that revolve around so-called “social costs” of gaming. state and local levels. SOCIAL IMPACT Executive Summary The “big picture” view of the impact of the gaming industry on society in the United States shows. There is widespread evidence to support the gaming industry in the United States as a progressive. the casino industry has made an invaluable contribution in the welfare-to-work area. The commission investigated some of the common claims made about the “social costs” associated with casino gaming and found that they were either greatly exaggerated or completely false. Women. minorities and those with disabilities have been primary beneficiaries of the casino gaming industry. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 11 . as have food stamp distributions. The following outlines testimony and research presented to the NGISC regarding the social impacts of casino gaming at the national. among other benefits. Women and minorities account for a large percentage of the casino work force. Any discussion of the social impact of gaming should weigh the benefits against the costs — the accuracy of which is highly questionable — for a full and fair consideration of the issue. As numerous studies and testimony before the NGISC revealed. Hundreds of thousands of hours in volunteer time have been donated to worthy causes along with millions of dollars. This translates into generous social benefits.
Nev...Soc ial Impact of Gaming in the United States It is clear that the gaming industry contributes positively to the American economy. Jr.. housing starts. In one of the most recent studies of the social costs of legalized gaming. What I’ve become. 1999. Feb. meeting. 1999).38 A number of gaming employees testified before the commission during the course of its hearings. I tell them “it’s not what I do. corporate income taxes. 20.39 Soc ial Impact of Gaming in Sp ec ific Gaming Jur is dict ions The commission heard a number of public officials testify about the positive.. 39 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. mayor of Reno.C. Testimony of Reno. and a performing arts theatre hosting Broadway touring shows. 1997. 40 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. with non-gaming businesses relocating to Reno due to an ideal tax structure and an enviable quality of life. D. vi.40 Kenneth Murphree. 38 National Opinion Research Center. Nev. Although we are a city of modest size. who told the commission: When people ask me if I like what I do.37 A study conducted for the NGISC by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) reported on the results of its community database research. bankruptcy and an elevation in pathological gambling. Washington. Testimony of Stephen Karaisz. The Impact of Casinos on Crime and Other Social Problems: An Analysis of Recent Experiences (Baltimore: Greater Baltimore Committee. Casinos have had quite modest effects on the measured social problems of the cities in which they have been introduced to in recent years. Conference of Mayors Task Force on Gaming: In my city of Reno. a professor at the School of Public Affairs at the University of Maryland and a consultant to the NGISC. county administrator for Tunica County. Jr. 8. much discussion centers on the alleged “social costs” of gaming. unemployment rates and unemployment insurance. Va. citizens of our communities benefit from the absence of state income taxes. Miss. concluded: There is surprising consistency in both the statistical and interview data.. low cost loans and mortgage payments. Among these was Jeff Griffin. we are able to support big city amenities such as a philharmonic orchestra. gaming is part of a diverse economy. Gambling Impact and Behavior Study (Chicago: University of Chicago. an opera company. Peter Reuter. progressive social benefits the gaming industry has brought to their jurisdictions. Despite these benefits. Virginia Beach.. told the commission: The gaming industry has…had a dramatic effect on county government and its ability to provide services. and chairman of the U.” (The casino industry provides) security for your family as well as providing excellent benefits packages. a ballet. a thriving downtown arts district.. it’s what I am. and the presence of an expanding economy resulting from this tax structure. January 1997). Typical of this testimony was that offered by Stephen Karaisz.S. bringing generous social benefits by creating employment and other opportunities for millions of people. tuition reimbursement and scholarships for our kids. retirement and investment opportunities. in which it compiled and examined information from 100 randomly selected communities as well as 10 communities within 50 miles of a casino. The study found that those communities closest to casinos experienced a 12 percent to 17 percent drop in welfare payments. which have been variously enumerated as crime. With legalized gambling in Nevada. 37 12 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association . an employee with the Hilton Gaming Corporation. meeting. Mayor Jeff Griffin. Aug. Peter Reuter.
Mayor Kevin Keely. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 41 13 . We’ve expanded our local library. a local community action agency. Testimony of Kenneth Murphree.We’ve been able to implement a housing rehabilitation program for elderly and handicapped homeowners. our jail’s overcrowded. May 20. We had one doctor’s office which was open about 40 hours a week to attend to medical needs.. Biloxi. In 1992…we didn’t have 24-hour medical service available in Tunica County. We have contracted with the Methodist Health Care System. the largest medical health care provider in the mid-south. You have to understand there is (sic) tremendous needs for improvement to substandard housing and we’re able to address those issues now. We’ve…funded a full-time youth court counselor. a charitable organization funded by gaming profits.. 10. Since March of last year the foundation has contributed over three and a half million dollars to philanthropic causes throughout the region. to assist them with a transition from school into the workforce. I just refer to it as somewhat of a YMCA type facility but it’s able to get our children where we can have good recreation. good leadership and be exposed to those things that they formerly just weren’t getting in Tunica County.41 Mayor Kevin Keely of Elgin. We have a new agricultural exposition facility under construction. Ill. Like all communities. We have a youth recreation program with a brand new $2 million facility. Chicago site visit. Miss. informed the commission: A fair assessment of the casino would not be complete without considering the Grand Victoria foundation. We’ve been able to provide financial support to the Tunica County Literacy Council for adult education and literacy. 42 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. National Gambling Impact Study Commission. you had to travel some 40 miles to adjacent counties to get medical services. We focused a lot of the income that we received these first few years on water and sewer and road systems to try to support this casino industry to secure and stabilize these jobs. an advisor to work with atrisk teenagers. We purchased four new fire trucks.42 A number of studies and publications also provided details on the social impact of gaming in the various gaming jurisdictions. We made extensive improvements to the water and sewer systems and improvements to our county roads. We bought a new emergency communications system for the county. We have funded a public transportation program through the Aaron Henry Foundation which is facilitating our workers now to be able to get the jobs. We’re able to fund that for them. 1998. Sept. We’ve created summer youth jobs for our young people. After hours or on weekends. Testimony of Elgin. site visit. We’ve increased the funding and staff for our sheriff ’s department and constructed a new jail. We have hired through Mid-State Opportunity. We’ve increased elderly services for meals and transportation and for homemaker services. those who have dropped out of school or are just struggling in school. trying to get these people good jobs and that’s what we’ve achieved. That’s what it’s all about.. 1998. Ill. 111-13. who has opened a 24-hour medical clinic in Tunica County now. We have a new landfill which is operated by the largest landfill company in the United States.
State University of New Jersey.47 Nevada Commission on Tourism. 44 43 14 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association . Over 210. 47 Bureau of Economic Research. 26. This is particularly significant because the regulatory goal is only 15 percent.000 citizens throughout New Jersey enjoy the benefits of this unique program funded by casino revenue. By 1997. New Jersey Casino Control Commission.2 percent to 12. 6. Made In Nevada: Creating Pride. Limitations in the Workplace: A Survey & Study of Atlantic City Casinos. [I]n 1977. Nevada reported that 11 percent of the population had incomes below the poverty level.44 Development of the casino industry has made a significant impact upon individual’s (sic) dependence on government assistance. 61 of every 1.000 persons nationally receive food stamp allocations. As of 1995. During that same period. 46 Ibid.J.300 were receiving Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC). A Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission.000 Nevadans vs. their activity limitations and their demographic characteristics. the percentage of the population below the poverty level nationally was nearly 14 percent. In Nevada.45 Atlantic City casinos have increased their combined purchasing from businesses owned by minorities and women from a low in 1990 of 2. 18.86 percent ($35. …the conclusion must be that the percentage of disabled persons employed at the Atlantic City casinos compares favorably with the percentage of persons in the labor pool.1 million) to 24 percent ($252. Nevada falls below the national average in the number of Aid to Families with Dependent Children (AFDC) recipients.3 million) in 1996. only 3. N. 64. Opportunity and Hope in the Silver State: The number of Nevadans whose incomes fall below the poverty level remains below the national average. It is apparent that the increase of employment opportunities has contributed significantly to this decline. While Atlantic City’s population was increasing. no matter how that pool is determined.900 Atlantic City residents were receiving welfare assistance and 5.: Rutgers University. Gaming. 45 Ibid. only 26 out of every 1. Opportunity and Hope in the Silver State.000 residents receive AFDC payments. That finding stems from our survey in which about three quarters of the nearly 45.000 received AFDC.3 percent of the persons working at the Atlantic City casinos are disabled.43 New Jersey From Casino Gambling in New Jersey: A Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission: The Pharmaceutical Assistance to the Aged and Disabled Program allows income eligible participants to purchase medical prescriptions for a $5 payment.000 Nevadans receive similar payments. 28. October 1998).46 From Limitations in the Workplace: A Survey & Study of Atlantic City Casinos: …8. 51 out of every 1. Made In Nevada: Creating Pride. 96 per 1.Nevada From Gaming. report to the New Jersey Casino Control Commission (New Brunswick. 24. regardless of the actual cost of the prescription. The number of food stamp program recipients in Nevada falls below the national average. Nationally.200 received welfare and 3. it witnessed a remarkable 54 percent decrease in those receiving welfare and a 44 percent reduction of AFDC payments.000 employees at the casinos took the time to fill out a survey form that asked about their medical conditions.
and toys for battered women and their children. air-conditioned community theaters. In addition. built playgrounds. basketball courts. refurbished piers. rebuilt churches damaged in fires. including reliance on estimates derived from other studies and simplistic before-and-after comparisons that attempt to attribute either positive or negative changes to gambling. civil rights. This statement by the law enforcement officers indicated that they saw no connection between gaming and crime in their jurisdictions.48 Mississippi From The Mississippi Miracle: How The State With the Worst Odds Ended Up With The Winning Hand: Since 1992.50 Gaming and Crime To address questions concerning the impact of casino gaming on crime rates. purchased food. school supplies. Pathological Gambling—A Critical Review (Washington. 49 Harrison County Development Commission. 30. 1998. Atlantic City. Twenty-four sheriffs and chiefs of police from gaming jurisdictions around the country submitted Crime and Gaming: Statement of Findings to the commission on Sept. and shelters for disadvantaged children. law enforcement and government regulators and gathered evidence from other experts in the field. Consider the Lifeline Program of heating assistance….000 organizations statewide. gang prevention. bought high school band equipment. 50 National Research Council. N. and the Lifeline Program. The NRC also pointed to common failings in the current research. A needy senior or disabled citizen can receive $225 in just one year to help defray the cost of their heating bill. provided transportation for crippled and burned children. paid for summer camp tuitions.49 Measur ing Social Impacts In a 1999 report prepared for the commission. “There is a plethora of studies with implicit but untested assumptions underlying the analysis that often are either unacknowledged by those performing the analysis. They have funded scholarships. site visit.” reported the NRC study. they have sponsored educational programs and counseling sessions on such topics as compulsive gambling. clothing. in New Orleans. 11. or likely to be misunderstood by those relying on the results. built libraries in rural communities. eye exams and glasses for those in need. The Lifeline Program is…largely funded by the casino tax revenue and has an annual budget of about $30 million.. Statewide more than 140. and environmental awareness. and funded doublelung transplants. childbirth/teenage pregnancy. helped the elderly with utility bill and pest control assistance. Jan. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 15 . the National Research Council (NRC) of the National Academy of Sciences criticized many of the existing analyses on the impact of casino gaming for their methodological flaws. The Mississippi Miracle. Kenneth LeFevre. Mississippi casinos have donated more than $25 million in cash and in-kind services to over 3. preserved cemeteries.C. or PAAD. 48 National Gambling Impact Study Commission.New Jersey state legislator Kenneth LeFevre testified before the commission on state social programs that benefit from casino funding: I’d like to mention two of the largest individual programs funded primarily by casino tax revenues because together they receive more than half of the tax dollars. Testimony of New Jersey state Rep. D.000 senior and disabled citizens receive this assistance. I’m referring…to the Pharmaceutical Assistance to the Aged or Disabled. 1998. 21. the commission heard testimony from public officials.: National Academy Press. 1999).J. illiteracy.
May 20. To investigate a possible link. 1998. the visitor adjusted crime rate was almost 70 crimes per 1.J. Mayor Ann Hutchinson. had commented that the downtown area is one of the safest areas in Madison County. Chicago site visit. reported to the commission that: Our crime office has no direct evidence to indicate that casinos have caused an increase of crime along our three-county coast from 1994 to 1997.51 The New Jersey Casino Control Commission reported that: A person in Atlantic City is less likely to be a victim of crime today than in 1977. site visit. We have contacted the social agencies in Scott County. Sept. 1998. 29. 53 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. Mayor Donald Sandridge. New Jersey Casino Control Commission. It’s mainly credit card companies pushing their products on the consumers and the ease National Gambling Impact Study Commission.”53 Bob Waterbury.. 21. 249. As a former police chief. an active member of the American Bankruptcy Institute and the immediate past chairman of the Bankruptcy Section of the Louisiana State Bar Association. but none of those have occurred. I was concerned about those projections. testified before the commission that: The critics of riverboat gaming projected increases of crime. Atlantic City is clearly safer today than it was in 1977. that is probably a crime-free area around the Belle (riverboat casino).. prior to casinos. 1998.54 Mayor Ann Hutchinson of Bettendorf. Ill. 52 51 16 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association .. 1998. Biloxi. this number dropped to fewer than 53 crimes per 1. Illinois riverfront. mayor of Alton. prostitution and organized crime activities. to quote Bill. May 20.52 Donald Sandridge. In fact. “There’s been absolutely no crime problem occurring in Madison County which has resulted from the operation of the Alton Belle casino on Alton. Bill Haine. 10. Iowa. executive director of the Mississippi Coast Crime Commission. In 1996. In 1977. Our State’s Attorney.55 Gaming and Bankruptcy Personal bankruptcy rates in the United States increased by 41 percent from 1994 to 1996 — a time of dramatic gaming expansion. N. Jan. They do not see any impact. 55 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. Testimony of Bob Waterbury. Typical of the information they received was that supplied by Rudy Cerone. the commission heard testimony from bankruptcy experts. Miss..New Jersey Attorney General Peter Verniero testified before the commission that: [O]ther statistics show that when adjusted for ever increasing visitor volume…crime is actually lower today then before the advent of casinos.000 people. Testimony of Bettendorf. Ill.000 people. In fact. Testimony of Alton. Chicago site visit. Iowa. The reduction in crime may be directly associated with the increase of employment opportunities and implementation of a number of programs to improve police effectiveness…. site visit. A Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission. Atlantic City. 54 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. We have some EMS calls for emergency medical service. a decrease of almost 25 percent. told the commission that: Our Police Department does not report any incidents of crime specifically within the area. Testimony of Peter Verniero. Cerone told the commission: [T]he increase in consumer bankruptcies has little or nothing to do with gambling in the gross amount.
which compiled and examined information from 100 randomly selected communities as well as 10 communities within 50 miles of a casino.56 A survey conducted for the commission by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) confirmed the statements made by these witnesses. but across the country.of the bankruptcy laws allowing consumers an easy way out. casino proximity did not contribute to increased bankruptcy. Those are the two main factors for the great rise in bankruptcies.57 56 57 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. not only here in Louisiana. Testimony of Rudy Cerone. American Gaming Association Casino Gaming in America 17 . Sept. 221. National Opinion Research Center. According to the survey. 1998. 11. Gambling Impact and Behavior Study. New Orleans site visit. crime or infant mortality.
In Nevada and New Jersey alone. The following outlines testimony and reports presented to the NGISC on state regulation of the casino gaming industry.C. stockbrokers and investment analysts. In sum. publicly traded corporations are extremely sensitive about negative publicity or any issue that might raise concerns with stockholders. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). R E G U L A T I O N Executive Summary Casino gaming is one of the most highly regulated industries in the United States. more than 1. First. and file extensive and regular disclosures with. studied. Large. which also retains regulatory authority over them. Casinos and Crime: An Analysis of the Evidence (Washington. 18 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association . In essence.000 regulators work at a cost to the industry of an estimated $70 million. 44.S. December 1997). the U. securities or nuclear energy industries. as strictly regulated as the banking. This level of investment adds yet a third layer of regulation — public opinion. zealously inspected and carefully regulated. (the personal disclosure form employed by the Illinois Gaming Board runs 54 pages) providing details on such matters as: • Identity of family members • Residential history (can go back as far as 25 years) • Employment history • Educational history (can go back as far as grammar school) • Litigation history • Licensure history • Financial/tax information (not only for the prospective licensee but also for spouses and children and sometimes other family members) The industry is regulated by the states.: American Gaming Association. publicly held gaming-entertainment companies are subject to regulation by.58 Casino license applicants must fill out lengthy questionnaires and personal disclosure forms. the SEC provides a second regulatory layer over the gaming-entertainment business. Many retirement funds also own a large portion of the industry’s stock. there is very little about the gaming industry that is not dissected. 58 Jeremy Margolis.I V. D. but public ownership of the casino companies results in multiple levels of oversight.
informed the commission that: As Mayors of America’s cities. the regulatory structure was completely revamped. and governor when we removed the entire ownership and management of the Stardust. practices. whether it is a bank or other financial services industry or the gaming industry should be well-regulated. As an exception. I was Attorney General when we closed the Aladdin. The gaming industry started slowly in Nevada. Nev. I have seen the industry at its worst and at its best.”59 The senator’s testimony on this point focused on the strict and successful regulation of the industry within his state. history and administrative practices of the gaming regulatory system in his state: There is no more crucial state responsibility than to have good. associations. Included in the 1971 law revising the regulatory structure was this statement. Feb. locations. with a gaming commission as a quasi-judicial 5-member commission granting and denying applications for gaming licenses and imposing disciplinary measures. but reached a period of rapid growth in the 1940’s. meeting. “The continued growth and success of gaming is dependent upon public confidence and trust that gaming licensing is conducted honestly and competitively.S. Testimony of U. Any business based on cash. there was a recognition that if this industry were to be allowed to continue. Testimony of Reno. Nevada On this subject. a prerogative reserved to them by the 10th Amendment to the Constitution. 1999. Atlantic City. Nevada has a two-tier system. Public confidence and trust can only be maintained by strict regulation of all persons. site visit. Robert Torricelli of New Jersey testified before the NGISC that “…there (is) no industry in America more regulated than the casino industry.60 In testimony before the NGISC.” The following is a breakdown of testimony and materials presented to the NGISC detailing regulation of the casino gaming industry in specific gaming states. 60 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 59 19 . Jan. We made mistakes along the way. a state and local issue. Sen. and activities related to the operation of licensed gaming establishment and the manufacture and distribution of gambling devices and equipment..J. Sen. 1998. Virginia Beach. and chairman of the U. nor prohibited by it to the states. Mayor Jeff Griffin. Over the next 20 years.. or to the people. we recognize that Indian gaming is uniquely a federal issue.” National Gambling Impact Study Commission. “The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution. in fact. 21. Any recommendations put forth by this commission must be predicated on the recognition of this fundamental truth — casino gaming is a state and local issue. Conference of Mayors Task Force on Gaming. 8. That the rights of creditors and licensees are protected and that gaming is free from criminal and corruptive elements. honest. States exercise scrupulous and intense regulation of gaming. By the mid 1950’s. which declares.Regulation and the Gaming Industr y U..S. But today. thorough regulation. two major strip hotel operations in our state.. Gaming is a cash business. Nevada has an exemplary system of regulation.S. are reserved to the states respectively. We didn't start that way in Nevada.S. Nev. N. Va. Today. mayor of Reno. the state had to play a stronger regulatory role. U. it is our primary goal to communicate to you and future federal panels that casino gaming is. although his words could have been applied to regulatory practices in all gaming jurisdictions. Richard Bryan of Nevada reviewed the purpose. Sen. and the gaming control board with 3 full-time members to handle all administrative and regulatory functions as well as making licensing and disciplinary recommendations to the full commission. Jeff Griffin. Robert Torricelli.
I was fortunate to work in the Governor’s office at that time as a young law student. We did. U. site visit. Sen. that organized crime and petty thieves and others would come to Atlantic City and enter our state.S. and employs more than 400. live with another fear.S.61 U. Sen. and that is that casinos in Atlantic City and this industry would attract some of the worst elements in our society. Sen. former chairman of the Nevada Gaming Commission. Instead. told the NGISC that: Gaming works well in Nevada for one main reason. however. Robert Torricelli recounted a brief history of the considerations behind the development of the regulatory policies for casino gaming in New Jersey: [I]n frank conversation. Sen. The application process includes extensive background checks on all those even marginally affiliated with a new facility. 1998.. key employee. The gaming control board has a budget of $20. but we weren’t sure. 19. Testimony of U. National Gambling Impact Study Commission. D. There are no casinos in the world that are more tightly supervised and regulated than casino gaming in the State of New Jersey.00. The average license investigation for a major size casino takes more than 9 months and costs between $400. Washington.S. Many of us did not realize the full financial benefit that would come to New Jersey. Harry Reid. Aug.Every aspect of the casino operation in Nevada is closely regulated. Testimony of U. or a permanent ban from any participation or work in the gaming industry. meeting. Harry Reid of Nevada. 63 62 20 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association . Jan. and those seeking to buy into a gaming establishment must be licensed. Post-license investigations are constant to detect any such problem as hidden ownership interest or organized crime involvement.000.S. We won the fight.7 million for 1997.. The enforcement division of the control board works on a 24-hour. Every operator and/or owner. 21. 1997. The control board tests and must approve all electronic and mechanical gaming devices. With the close scrutiny in Nevada and Atlantic City the major criminal operatives likely have moved to the under or unregulated environments. 1998. This tends to invite problems. All gaming employees must continually maintain an approved work permit. We had hopes.000. Today New Jersey has every reason to be proud. 7-day week inspecting facilities and equipment.63 61 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. N. Richard Bryan. Their gaming agents have the powers of law enforcement officers. conducting undercover operations and monitoring work permits of employees. 10. Atlantic City. Nov. The state does not have to prove that the applicant is not acceptable. Testimony of U. Sen.62 New Jersey In testimony before the NGISC. Robert Torricelli. Las Vegas site visit.C. all paid by the applicant. and victimize our people.J. National Gambling Impact Study Commission. let us return to another judgment of 20 years ago. proper regulation. The commodity in gaming is cash. New Jersey had reason to fear organized crime entering this industry. Not only is there no industry in America more regulated than the casino industry. ruin the industry. the applicant has to prove that he or she is worthy of a license from the state. Let me be clear on this issue.00 to $700. An important element of the Nevada license process is that the burden of proof is on the applicant. Violation of Nevada gaming laws can result in fines.S. temporary revocation of a license.
Issuance of a casino license to a corporate applicant also requires qualification of every holding company and intermediary company of the applicant. suspend or limit any required gaming affiliated licenses and to hear and decide all complaints for violations of the Casino Control Act. In 20 years of casino regulation in New Jersey. The commission may reopen licensing hearings at any time. fees and penalties generated by casino operations.000 for longer renewal terms. Licensing System It is through the licensing system that criminal elements are kept out of the casino industry. In 1997. The Division of Gaming Enforcement…investigates all license applicants. the willful failure to Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 21 . The casino license application fee is a minimum of $200. • to ensure the close supervision of all gaming operations.000. there has not been any scandal involving organized crime in casino operations. each person who directly or indirectly holds any beneficial interest or ownership of the securities issued by the corporation and any person who in the opinion of the commission has the ability to control the corporation or elect a majority of the board of directors. This includes each officer. The commission is vested with the power to promulgate all regulations interpreting and enforcing the provisions of the act. deny. but also businesses doing business with the casinos. The principal regulatory purposes of the two agencies are: • to ensure that only persons of good character. although the total cost may increase depending upon the cost of investigating and considering the application. • to ensure the full and accurate assessment and collection of all taxes. including the power to issue. No other industry undergoes such severe scrutiny — scrutiny which includes not only the individuals working for casino licensees. The criteria include: a conviction of finding by the commission that the applicant has committed one of the enumerated offenses or an offense found to be inimical to the act. A casino license applicant must establish the integrity of all financial sources and the qualifications of each person who is required to be qualified. The casino license renewal fee is a minimum of $100. principal employee. Casino licenses are initially issued for three successive one-year terms and renewed for periods of up to four years thereafter. prosecutes all complaints brought under the Casino Control Act and monitors casino equipment and operations. Disqualification Criteria The commission will not license any person who is disqualified pursuant to section 86 of the Casino Control Act.000 for each one-year license renewal and minimum of $200. director. and • to administer the regulation of casino properties to foster and enhance the redevelopment of Atlantic City and its hospitality industries. the division employed a staff of 373 and had a budget of $31 million.Documents submitted to the NGISC describe the regulation of casino gaming operations in New Jersey as follows: The New Jersey Casino Control Act The adoption of the Casino Control Act by the New Jersey Legislature created the Casino Control Commission and the Division of Gaming Enforcement. Regulatory Oversight The Casino Control Commission…employs a staff of 361 with a budget of $23 million. honesty and integrity participate in the casino industry. revoke.
Political Contribution Prohibition The Casino Control Act prohibits political contributions by any applicant for or holder of a casino license. Casino Service Industries All casino service industries offering goods and services which directly relate to casino gaming activity and their owners. in order to be licensed. honesty and integrity and their financial stability. (NOTE: This requirement addresses the issue of the infiltration into the gaming industry by the criminal element through means other than direct casino ownership.64 64 New Jersey Casino Control Commission.061 employee license applications and 163. the pursuit of economic gain in an occupational manner which is in violation of the criminal or civil policies of New Jersey. Casino key employees occupy managerial and supervisory positions and possess the highest credentials. the commission has permitted 48. The prohibition extends to any officer.755 employee license renewals. management and supervisory personnel and principal employees having the responsibility for services to a casino licensee must satisfy the standards established for casino key employees. All licensees must satisfy the affirmative licensing criteria of demonstrating their good character. except residency. The different credentials reflect the employee’s level of responsibility for the casino’s operations. A Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission. Employees of Licensees The Casino Control Act requires casino key employees and all other casino employees to be licensed or registered before starting employment in a casino. integrity and responsibility. Licensees and registrants also are subject to the disqualification criteria of the act. honesty and integrity of the enterprise and of each person required to be qualified. 7-11. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 22 .572 from doing so. and any person or agent acting on behalf of these entities. official corruption or organized crime activity. intermediary or subsidiary company. key casino employee or principal employee of any of these companies. The Act also provides for the temporary licensing of employees. Since 1978. identification as a member of organized crime or an inimical association with a member of organized crime or a career offender cartel.) Businesses are required to be licensed once they have attained the specified dollar amounts in their business transactions with any casino operator. director. All casino service industries that provide non-gaming goods and services on a regular or continuing basis must be licensed once they reach a monetary threshold. the commission processed 118. and contumacious defiance of any official investigatory body when such body is engaged in investigating crimes related to gaming. From 1978 through 1996.reveal any fact material to qualification or supplying any information which is untrue or misleading as to any material fact pertaining to qualification. or any holding.176 enterprises to conduct business with casino licensees and has prohibited 1. Such enterprises are required to establish the good character.
Mel Fisher. Our agency and its sister agencies in Iowa. administrator (staff director) for the Illinois Gaming Board. Michael Belletire. Missouri. but a marathon. If there is one theme common to midwestern regulation of gambling it is not competition but cooperation. Steve DuCharme.” The answer to that question is a firm “no. Chuck Patton. Indiana and Michigan have adopted what I consider to be a model of inter-governmental collaboration and cooperation. There is a fundamental recognition on the part of the midwestern state regulators that we rise and fall with one another when it comes to effective and tight control of casino gambling.Competition Between States As to the question of whether competition between states has eroded the effectiveness of regulatory policies. George Turner and Dennis Neilander. Since initial authorization of riverboat casinos in these states there have been only a few significant changes that have served to liberalize the regulatory and policy approach to gambling in the midwest. prepared for the National Gambling Impact Study Commission. Frank Catania. informed the commission: One of the questions put to us was whether “competition has lead (sic) to a ‘race to the bottom’ in terms of regulation.” If there is a race between our midwestern states it is not a sprint. 1999. nor even a mile run.65 Belletire. It is standard operating procedure for each of the midwestern regulatory agencies to share background information and to examine carefully the implications of adverse action taken by another jurisdiction. NGISC Paper on Regulation. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 65 Mike 23 . It has been eight years since Iowa and Illinois first authorized riverboat casinos and nearly six years since Missouri and Indiana followed suit.
This has made it extremely difficult to determine with any accuracy how many people truly suffer from this addiction. A Complex Phenomenon Disordered gambling — like most addictive behaviors — is complex and difficult to understand. D I S O R D E R E D G A M B L I N G Executive Summary As the National Gambling Impact Study Commission stated in its final report. While researchers reported a link between increased access to legalized casino gaming and higher prevalence rates when combining data from the patron and phone surveys.S. social scientists and others involved in this field of study. Further complicating matters. Jan. differences in prevalence gathered through phone interviews with 2. According to the survey.. those addicted to gambling do not come home with liquor on their breath or walk with a stumbling gait. the phone survey results alone did not show a similar link. calm pool of water with only a bow and arrow. adult population experiences serious problems with gambling. Gambling Impact and Behavior Study. and current editor of The Journal of Gambling Studies. adult population. disordered gambling was considered a character flaw or a moral weakness. Atlantic City. 1-1. However.66 The American public is increasingly aware of the issue of disordered gambling. According to NORC’s final report. there is a lack of agreement on terms used by researchers. But it is not an issue that is easy to explain or understand. 22. As recently as the 1960s. director of the Harvard Medical School Division on Addictions. and responsible gaming practices in gaming jurisdictions and individual casino properties. Shaffer.6 percent of the U. a small percentage do not gamble responsibly.J. the commission research was inconclusive. 1. Final Report. Howard J.S.68 66 67 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. adult population.” because unlike substance abusers. In fact. testified before the NGISC that. “Attempts to understand compulsive and pathological gambling resemble someone trying to shoot a fish in a clear. N. but a national survey conducted by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) for the NGISC concluded that the percentage is far lower — closer to 1 percent of the U. lead author of one of the most highly regarded studies to date on disordered gambling. That complexity has led to the development of disparate and often conflicting information about the number of people who suffer from gambling problems. While it is easy to see the fish and take aim. Testimony of Howard J. Estimating the Prevalence of Disordered Gambling Behavior in the United States and Canada: A Meta-analysis.S. On the subject of access. the overwhelming majority of people gamble for entertainment purposes and experience no adverse consequences whatsoever. doctors. The following outlines testimony and materials presented to the NGISC on the prevalence of disordered gambling. site visit. Shaffer. disordered gambling has been called the “hidden illness. 1998. June 1999. refraction makes the task almost impossible. treatment for problem gamblers.400 adults and 500 youth ages 16 and 17 across the country were not statistically significant. Opponents of gaming have put the numbers as high as 11 percent of the U.V. 0. associate editor of The Journal of Substance Abuse Treatment. And no “gold standard” or respected benchmark exists against which those working in the field can judge the accuracy of a screening instrument.”67 Pre valence of Disordered Gambling A national survey conducted for the NGISC by the National Opinion Research Center (NORC) concluded that less than 1 percent of the population can be classified as pathological gamblers. 68 National Opinion Research Center. National Gambling Impact Study Commission. 24 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association .
For example. In his testimony before the commission. 76. the history of gambling research inadvertently has fueled this very perception that expanded gaming. and despite this wide availability tobacco has a much smaller user base than 20 years ago. charitable gaming. only the adult segment of the general population has shown an increasing rate of gambling disorders. Atlantic City. sole explanation for the increased rate of gambling as an addictive disorder in the United States. 1997).” Also. during the past two decades there’s been an increased availability and accessibility to gambling. the prevalence rates of disordered gambling will be influenced less meaningfully by the growth of legally available gambling. and Joni Vander Bilt. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 25 . 1998. which estimated that 1. Males from the adult general population are almost two times more likely than their female counterparts to suffer level three gambling problems during their lifetime. This may not be an accurate perception. the reason for this is that early gambling prevalence studies tended to focus 69 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. 22. And. “…(adolescents) will tend to gamble regardless of the availability of legalized gambling. gambling certainly has expanded much more rapidly than the rate of disordered gambling. in spite of higher rates of disordered gambling among adolescents and substance abusing or psychiatric patients in treatment. Matthew N. a growing sense of emotional discomfort. 4-5. is the sole course of increased gambling problems. adolescents from the general population and college students have a greater risk of experiencing a gambling disorder compared with their adult counterparts by a factor of two-and-a-half to three times. The rate increase we observed among adults from the general population could be due to many factors. for these groups. Testimony of Howard J. There are few messages about the potential risks and hazards of gambling. For example. We must conclude that availability is not a sufficient. there’s been a decline in the belief that one can achieve the American dream. it is possible that as gambling becomes more mainstream…then (adolescents) might begin to move away from any form of licit gambling because it will not offer the opportunity for the expression of anti-social motives. has been widely available. In fact. casino. Estimating the Prevalence of Disordered Gambling Behavior in the United States and Canada: A Meta-analysis (Boston: President and Fellows of Harvard College. Observers tend to think that disordered gambling is growing in direct proportion to the expansion of legalized gambling opportunities. psychiatric status and family history appear among the most prominent. Similarly.29 percent of the U. Hall. In part. site visit. Tobacco. arguably the most virile and objective chemical dependence. Jan. gender.69 (NOTE: Language from the study: “…adolescents…are among the least likely to avoid gambling simply because it is illicit.These results were in line with the results of Shaffer’s meta-analysis.J. Shaffer. There’s been an increased social acceptance of gambling.. a malaise or dysthymia among the American people. unavailable. and by expanded I mean lottery. Shaffer described various other salient results of his study: Our new research reveals that during the past 23 years. 70 Howard J. and…we have no prospective research to date…. when compared with adults from the general population. perhaps. There’s been an increasing desire to participate in risktaking activities in general. compared with their female counterparts.S. or socially proscribed. N. Consequently.”70) Among the risk factors for gambling disorders. Male college students are almost four times more likely to have serious gambling problems. All of these things could play a role in increasing the rate for disordered gambling among the general adult population. However. age. Shaffer. And. adult population could be classified as having serious pathological problems incident to gambling. adults in treatment for substance abuse or other psychiatric disorders are almost nine times more likely to have a level three gambling disorder during their lifetime. We do know that. Assessing shifting social trends is very difficult without evidence from prospective research.
Consequently. it’s incorrect to assume that once someone becomes a disordered gambler only professional treatment will arrest the problem. 22. and the extent of people who recover without any treatment at all. Shaffer also described some of the misconceptions about gambling disorders and the shortcomings of existing research: At the risk of being misinterpreted and misrepresented.on the adult general population. such an increase is not without end. it’s not possible to estimate accurately the economic and social impact of disordered gambling..71 (NOTE: Language from the study: “We can anticipate that. Just as most people who occasionally feel depressed do not progress to a state of clinical depression. Shaffer. perhaps. researchers and social policymakers have made two important assumptions about disordered gambling that are often incorrect. “One of the original objectives for the NCRG was to serve as a catalyst to encourage other funding sources to support disordered gambling research. This is the population segment with the lowest rate of gambling disorder. site visit. More recently…their research interests have become much more diversified and they’ve examined young people and other high-risk population segments.”72) Research and Pre vention Beyond prevalence rates for disordered gambling. 72 Howard J. in spite of the widespread availability of these products. N. A Meta-analysis. While the rate of disordered gambling among adults may continue to increase. the NGISC also looked at what steps are being taken in the research community to enhance understanding of disordered gambling. without precise estimates of the duration of gambling disorders. which was established by the gaming industry in 1996 to fund research on disordered gambling. Christine Reilly. 57-58. It’s incorrect that all gamblers who experience problems with gambling eventually progress to become level three or pathological gamblers. most gamblers with level two gambling-related problems do not experience a progression to level three states. This has happened on two previous occasions. biased the prevailing subjective impressions of our disordered gambling prevalence rates. Just as Americans have been reducing their use of tobacco and alcohol during the past two decades. or the repeal of prohibition of beverage alcohol. 4-5. like the very slow adjustment people have made to the information about tobacco-related dangers. Jan. I’d like to note that many economists. executive director of the National Center for Responsible Gaming (NCRG). she noted. 1998. Testimony of Howard J. the rates of gambling excess will also begin to diminish as people learn of the potential personal and social risks associated with gambling. the informal and formal social controls to provide protection against gambling problems will emerge slowly….. 71 26 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association . Secondly. the shifting evidence provided by more recent studies of new population segments with higher rates of the disorder have. In her testimony. … … Furthermore.J. Atlantic City. We are very proud to have already achieved this objective with the recent announcement of the first-ever-funding initiative on pathological gambling by the National Institutes of Health (NIH). it’s likely to happen again. The NCRG played a role in this develNational Gambling Impact Study Commission. et al. testified before the commission on how the NCRG has generated increased attention to gambling disorders throughout the addictions research field. Shaffer.
service. self denial. but natural recovery is certainly another pathway out of disordered gambling.”74 Tr e a t m e n t The NGISC also heard testimony on a variety of treatment approaches for problem gamblers. reverence. Testimony of Christine Reilly. perhaps. Testifying at the Atlantic City commission hearing. is best known. a professor at Laval University in Quebec: [W]e’ve conducted a well controlled study where cognitive correction was the main component. these tools were forged on the anvil of Christianity. New Orleans site visit. In our society. National Gambling Impact Study Commission. Testimony of Rachel Volberg. faith. a treatment counselor from Winchester. Sept. perseverance. The gambling addict needs tools for living. Testimony of John Eades. 11. N.J. in addition to professional treatment. Nov. paired with other different therapeutic ingredients. neighbor and God provides the necessary tools to build a new and healthy life for the gambling addict.76 Robert Ladouceur. I concur with Henry James. Atlantic City. The methodology was pretty stringent. “Gambling researchers…have been calling for some kind of effort to fund research for many years. pioneer gambling researcher Rachel Volberg noted. 24-25. Jan.”73 According to other testimony. Ph.opment by demonstrating the enormous potential of the field for not only understanding pathological gambling.75 Various experts in the study and/or treatment of addictive behaviors presented testimony to the NGISC. and love of oneself. Testimony of Howard J. 75 National Gambling Impact Study Commission.: As regards treatment. 1998.. 22. 22. 76 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. only 6 percent had any success…. Shaffer. N. Atlantic City. 11. and I absolutely have to applaud the casino industry for coming up with that particular method. simplicity.. 5. 1998. responsibility. The National Center is the first effort that we’ve seen. but also for illuminating addictive disorders in general. Further.. Shaffer said to the NGISC in his testimony that any discussion of treatment for disordered gambling should reference this cautionary note: …most gamblers with level two gambling-related problems do not experience a progression to level three states. scientifically sound way of getting research done. 73 74 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. 1998. it’s a peer reviewed. Las Vegas site visit. and those who were in the control group.D. However. the famed Harvard psychologist who said that permanent behavior change only comes from having a spiritual transformation. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 27 . site visit. tolerance.J. I’ve found that those who had the healthiest recovery were those who returned to active participation in a church and firm belief in God. Jan. Tenn. Gamblers Anonymous. there are many different pathways out of disordered gambling. 1998. Among these were: John Eades. Current research has not identified reliable methods for determining which gamblers will develop gambling disorders. Results showed 85 percent success for the treated patients. From 20 years of working with alcohol and drug addicted individuals and observing them over time. the NCRG is creating a field of problem gambling research that is earning the respect and participation of the scientific community across the globe. Honesty. wisdom. or who will recover with or without treatment. site visit.
It’s patterned after the highly successful Brecksville VA programs designed by Dr. Testimony of Reece Middleton. 1998. 11. This we believe to be the most effective method of addressing the problem. New Orleans site visit. Las Vegas. We will utilize a proven combination of group and individual therapies. The average total time for a patient was 16 hours.78 77 78 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. National Gambling Impact Study Commission. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 28 . and Dr. 31. New Orleans site visit. nutrition and involvement in the 12-step recovery process. Sept. Testimony of Robert Ladouceur. 11.77 Reece Middleton.Not only was the treatment effective but it was also efficient. 1998. Hunter’s program at Charter. Sept. executive director of the Louisiana Association on Compulsive Gambling: We will open in northwest Louisiana a residential treatment center for compulsive gamblers unable to maintain abstinence in an outpatient setting…. Custer. education. 38-39.
state governments and individual casino companies have taken steps to address disordered gambling in casino facilities and communities where they operate. Robert Faiss. Both the industry and government have instituted policies pertaining to casino credit and usage of automated teller machines (ATMs) on the casino floor. Internal controls are the measures adopted within a business to safeguard its assets. each gaming jurisdiction has instituted comprehensive. While each Nevada casino is free to adopt its own internal control system. In addition.120 requires a casino to document that it has received information from either a bona fide credit-reporting agency. or a financial institution at which the patron maintains an account. these systems must be approved by the Gaming Control Board as meeting minimum standards. Each state requires the casino to determine that the patron is worthy of the amount of credit granted. Casinos do not publicly advertise the availability of credit to attract patrons.5 billion.VI. Credit play is estimated to account for approximately 5 percent to 15 percent of the total amount wagered at all Nevada casinos. Nevada casinos are subject to strict regulations regarding the information they collect before they grant credit to a casino patron. Nevada casinos reported gross gaming revenue of approximately $7. Casino credit is granted to a player at his or her specific request and only in the amount requested by the player. Below are excerpts from that testimony. I should note that the issuance of credit by a casino is subject to regulatory control in each of the seven gaming states that authorize a casino to grant credit. a legal business that has extended credit to the patron. C r e d i t P r a c t i c e s . Nevada Gaming Commission Regulation 6. effective voluntary and legislated responsible gaming programs tailored to specific gaming communities. AT M U s a g e a n d R e l a t e d P o l i c i e s Gaming opponents contend that liberal credit policies and the availability of ATMs within casinos are promoting gambling addictions and causing casino patrons to gamble excessively. Although my comments today are limited to Nevada. RESPONSIBLE GAMING Executive Summary With commission research indicating the prevalence rate of disordered gambling in the United States is around 1 percent. if such amount is warranted. promote operational efficiency and encourage adherence to prescribed managerial policies. Most casinos require additional information in order to satisfy themselves of the patron’s creditworthiness as part of the casinos’ required internal control procedures. the casino may grant credit to a patron if its own records or records at another casino indicate that the patron has established credit and that the patron has paid substantially all of the previous outstanding debt and there is a reasonable basis for granting the credit to the patron. chairman of the Administrative and Gaming Law Department at Lionel Sawyer & Collins: In 1997. The following presents a record of testimony and reports submitted to the NGISC outlining these specific efforts and initiatives. check the accuracy and reliability of its accounting data. The casino’s submitted system is continually evaluated by the regulators and by the casino’s independent accountants who must Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 29 . Alternatively. Finally. the casino industry is responding to meet the challenge of instituting responsible gaming programs and practices at its individual properties. The NGISC heard testimony from experts in the field on these issues and about industry and governmental policies pertaining to credit and the usage of ATMs.
But the small amount of uncollectable accounts show that. Nelson Rose. The failure to comply with its internal control submission subjects the casino to disciplinary proceedings. up from 139. Testimony of Robert Faiss. The presence of ATMs apparently has not caused visitors to overextend themselves. Las Vegas compares favorably to other cities in its bankruptcy filings for 1997. Testimony of I.000 in 1996. As the average transaction at a casino property is less than $200. Once a casino adopts an internal control system and submits the system to the Gaming Control Board.79 I. 1998. There is no way to identify whether the money was used to gamble and — because gaming accounts for only about half of revenues in major Nevada resorts — it is doubtful that all such advances were used for gaming. While Nevada casinos have always granted casino credit. ATMs are offered by casinos as a convenience to their customers. Various non-bank businesses specifically servicing the automated teller market are responsible for the majority of the growth. ranking 65th among metropolitan areas in bankruptcy filings per capita. Nelson Rose. validly scientific studies. the average Las Vegas visitor in 1997 spent less money per day than before the machines were introduced in casinos. National Gambling Impact Study Commission. The trend to use ATMs is not unique to Nevada casinos. This argument is not supported by empirical. the casino is bound by regulation to follow it.80 Casino credit policy also was discussed in Casino Gaming In New Jersey: A Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission: New Jersey permits a system of restricted check cashing or “counter check system” whereby the casino operator is permitted to accept a check from a patron only if the check is drawn on a personal checking account that has been verified by the casino and the check is deposited for collection within 79 80 National Gambling Impact Study Commission. Nevada’s new regulation to address problem gambling also requires Nevada casinos to post signs on all ATMs and credit card advance machines identifying where patrons with gambling problems may turn for help. customers do not appear to be abusing that convenience. In 1997. Nov.report any deficiencies to the Gaming Control Board. There are those who argue that gambling credit is driving casino patrons into bankruptcy. there were 180. 11. Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) were only introduced in Nevada casinos during the late 1980s. This criticism may be justified on public policy grounds. casinos are not too lax in their credit standards. 11. Las Vegas site visit. from a business and economic point of view. professor of law at Whittier Law School: Casinos have been criticized for being too lenient in their granting of credit.000 ATMs in the United States. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 30 . 1998. The Nevada industry — through its individual members and the Nevada Resort Association Task Force for Responsible Gaming — has worked closely with Nevada Gaming authorities and the Nevada Council on Problem Gambling to support a Nevada gaming regulation that among other things. Las Vegas site visit. According to a review of figures from the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority and the State Gaming Control Board. requires casinos to adopt a program allowing patrons to exclude themselves from receiving casino credit and check-cashing privileges. The Nevada experience in fact rebuts the argument that gaming credit is a major factor in bankruptcy filings. Nov. if it is true that they are encouraging excessive gambling.
at a minimum.81 Responsible Gaming Prog rams in Gaming Jur is dict ions Each gaming jurisdiction has instituted comprehensive voluntary and legislated responsible gaming programs. 11. Each licensee shall implement procedures and training for all employees who directly interact with gaming patrons (work) in gaming areas. These programs must include the following elements: Each licensee shall post or provide in conspicuous places or new gaming and cage areas and cash dispensing machines located in gaming areas written materials concerning the nature and symptoms of problem gambling and the toll-free telephone number of the National Council on Problem Gambling or a similar entity approved by the chairman of the board that provides information and referral services for problem gamblers. e) Procedures and forms requiring the patron to notify a designated office of the licensee 81 New Jersey Casino Control Commission. c) Standards and procedures that allow a patron to be prohibited from access to check cashing. considered decision on whether to gamble beyond cash on hand in the verified bank account. A casino may not approve a credit limit until a thorough verification of the credit application submitted by the patron has been completed. The following reports submitted to the NGISC described programs in place in specific states: Nevada The Nevada Gaming Commission requires restricted and non-restricted gaming licensees to establish programs that address problem gambling (Regulation 5. or the direct mail marketing of gaming opportunities. check cashing. A Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission. a patron may not cash counter checks in excess of his or her previously established credit limit. Although the commission does not impose any absolute limit on the amount of credit that may be extended to an individual. shall implement a program containing the elements described below. As appropriate. American Gaming Association Casino Gaming in America 31 . consist of information concerning the nature and symptoms of problem gambling behavior and assisting patrons in obtaining information about problem gambling programs. Each licensee that engages in the issuance of credit. or direct mail marketing by the licensee. check cashing. at a minimum. A patron is permitted to redeem a counter check by purchasing it for cash or cash equivalent prior to its deposit by the casino licensee. that allows patrons to self-limit their access to the issuance of credit. the issuance of credit. such programs shall contain. The restricted counter check system has some deterrent value for compulsive gamblers by requiring a more careful. the commission’s rules do require that all patron credit limits be supported by information contained in the patron’s credit file. d)Standards and procedures that allow a patron to be removed from the licensee’s direct mailing and other direct marketing regarding gaming opportunities at that licensee’s location. b)The development of written forms allowing patrons to participate in the program. as appropriate.170). A counter check is a multi-part form given to the patron by the casino and is made negotiable with the player’s bank information. and participation in promotion of gaming opportunities. Pursuant to credit rules adopted by the commission.a specified time period after acceptance. That training shall. the following: a) The development of written materials for dissemination to patrons explaining the program.
83 82 83 Nevada Resort Association. It also requires that security guards be present in arcades and establishes guidelines for training the security guards on how to spot potential pedophiles and child stalkers. Friday. there has been an increase in the amount of resources dedicated to this area by the law enforcement agencies and a greater likelihood that a juvenile identified gambling will be taken into custody.000 in fines collected by the commission each fiscal year are forwarded to the Department of Health. Juveniles out during those times must be with their parents or guardians. Media Fact Book (Las Vegas: Nevada Resort Association.000 is provided to the Council on Compulsive Gambling of New Jersey and $100.m. Of this amount. 30-31. Personnel who work on the floor in casinos have been trained in the identification of juveniles. In recent years. on weekends. incorporated statutory provisions to address this important concern. Any on-site advertising of casino or casino simulcasting operations must include the phrase “Bet With Your Head Not Over It” or some comparable language approved by the commission. however. the first $600. Anyone under the age of 18 must be off the public streets between 10 p. Juvenile Gambling The Casino Control Act provides that: No person under the age at which a person is authorized to purchase and consume alcoholic beverages shall enter or wager in a licensed casino or simulcasting facility. conscious of the issue of compulsive gambling. provided.m. In addition.m.82 New Jersey Legislative Initiatives to Address Compulsive Gambling The State Legislature.m. material or promotion covered by the program. call 1-800-GAMBLER” or some comparable language approved by the commission.000 is allocated to compulsive gambling treatment programs in the state. A Report to the National Gambling Impact Study Commission. New Jersey Casino Control Commission.m.m. $500. The Casino Control Act includes advertising parameters and the allocation of revenues to compulsive gambling programs collected via fines and penalties. to 5 a. or on a billboard or sign must contain the words “If you or someone you know has a gambling problem and wants help. Juveniles are allowed to cross the gaming floor provided that the casinos have in place a security plan to address the issue of underage gambling. Thousands of employees are now sensitive to this problem in addition to those security guards who roam the floor with juvenile identification as their sole function. Saturday and legal holidays. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 32 . that such a person may enter a casino or simulcasting facility by way of passage to another room…. A Clark County ordinance provides that arcades throughout the county must keep minors under 18 out of arcades from 10 p. or on their way to work. and 5 a. weekdays and from midnight to 5 a.m. All advertising that appears in print. to 5 a. legal holidays and summer vacation. 1998). Friday. There is a curfew on the Las Vegas Strip and some adjoining streets for those under the age of 18 – 9 p. Sunday through Thursday and also between 12 midnight and 5 a. Saturday.m.within 10 days of the patron’s receipt of any financial gaming privilege.
a 24-hour telephone helpline. gambling treatment experts and clinicians provide training and insight on problem gambling. Family members can also get help as well as gamblers who are affected. At Grand Casinos we have programs in place throughout our operations to help our employees recognize and respond to the signs of problem gambling. Thousands have contacted the program.3 percent of the gross lottery revenue and 0. while also disseminating problem gambling information to the public. We are only one of many companies with a strong commitment to the subject before you. Following are some excerpts from testimony that is representative of that heard by the commission: Tom Brosig. clergy. linking gamblers and concerned persons with provider agencies offering local counseling and educational programs. the Department of Public Health administers a public education and treatment program funded with 0. president and chief executive officer of Grand Casinos: Grand Casinos strives to be aggressive and innovative in responding to problem gambling issues. A resource library on problem gambling and a clearinghouse serve Iowans by distributing materials such as videotapes. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 33 . brochures and curriculum guides. social workers. Public service announcements also are placed on television. Our company mission statement relative to this issue is as follows: “At Grand Casinos we recognize that certain individuals may not be able to responsibly enjoy the entertainment product we offer. billboards. which provides advice and guidance on strategies and direction. Gambling stakeholders. The Iowa Gambling Treatment Program provides education. and a Web site (www. and in newspapers to address problem gambling and its effects on gamblers. 1999. the program engages in a variety of techniques. The program also sponsors statewide educational sessions on problem gambling behavior. To further disseminate these educational messages. cooperate with the program to address problem gambling behavior. family members and friends. Uniform Standards for Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission Licensees to Use in Addressing Problem Gambling. prepared for the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission.84 Industr y Programs and Practices The NGISC also heard testimony from those within the casino industry and others who work with the industry about how this sector is responding to meet the challenge of instituting responsible gaming programs and practices. referral and counseling services for persons affected by problem gambling behavior.Iowa In Iowa. we are committed to public efforts to promote responsible gambling.1800betsoff. including the Iowa Lottery and the Iowa Racing and Gaming Commission. human resources personnel.3 percent of the adjusted gross receipts from the riverboat casinos and the racetracks. The program serves Iowans through its wide network of resources set up to handle the crises and challenges due to excessive behavior related to the many types of gambling activities available in Iowa.org). The program is overseen by a gambling treatment advisory committee. we 84 Iowa Gaming Association and Iowa Gambling Treatment Program. Specific elements of the program include assessments and counseling for individuals and families on an outpatient basis. In addition. mental health clinicians. radio. providing advice to counselors. health care professionals and other interested parties. Using the Iowa Communications Network. which has responded to their need for services and information related to problem gambling behavior. 1-800-BETS OFF.
provide information and assistance to our customers. The experts have told us the best way to help someone with a gambling disorder is to make the resources and referrals of professional assistance available and easily accessible. fund research and contribute to agencies that assess the prevalence and address the treatment of gambling disorders. enabled the Mississippi Council on Compulsive Gambling to be founded and funded. we again helped organize and fund a similar think tank sponsored by the governor’s office. on Player cards. what we didn’t know was how to do the things we knew we should be doing. we knew we wanted to expose our staff to the characteristics and attributes associated with problem gambling. 34 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association . I contacted Betty George. So we turned to the experts. At Grand Casinos. on credit card applications and correspondence. In Mississippi. prevent underage gambling of all kinds. We make sure the Compulsive Gambling Helpline phone number is displayed throughout our properties.believe that it is our responsibility to be sensitive to our employees. Both Minnesota and Mississippi think tanks focused on a need to concentrate efforts toward prevention of youth gambling addiction. we knew we wanted to do the responsible thing. you need to quit” — which we print on our marketing collateral and include on our print and television advertising. The results of this think tank also shaped public policy in Mississippi. as many do. This PSA has been requested and provided to more than a dozen state councils on compulsive gambling. In 1992 we realized that even the experts didn’t have the answers. we have been told. perhaps believing. We’ve adopted a responsible gaming tag line: “When you need to win. customers. the executive director of the Minnesota Council on Compulsive Gambling. and host communities by proactively addressing problem gambling. both in the public access areas and in the staff and support areas. we began a relationship and developed a partnership which exists today. Despite her hesitancy. We helped organize and fund the Minnesota Public Policy Think Tank. in hotel directories. our programs focus on awareness and education. Initially. participate in industry programs and initiatives at the national and community level to increase awareness and ensure that accurate information is placed in the public domain. and along with other critical planning initiatives. we knew we wanted to educate our staff to the various stages of the disorder and determine what we as a company could do. We’ve also developed a public service announcement about problem gambling featuring the helpline phone number. we print the helpline phone number on brochures and posters. can make a difference for someone when they are ready to seek help for their problem. we knew that we wanted to understand problem gambling behavior. Our active participation in this process continued with the work at the national level as Grand helped organize and fund the North American Think Tank on Youth Gambling Issues held at Harvard University in 1995. we put it on our business cards. we knew that we didn’t endorse an ideology of profit at any cost.” From our earliest beginnings. Betty was hesitant to get involved with a casino operator. This was a watershed event and resulted in a roadmap for the State of Minnesota in addressing the issue of problem gambling. Something as simple as providing a brochure which publicizes a helpline number. and lastly. and on the in-room videos played in our hotels. At Grand Casinos we will: educate our employees and provide them with resources to help themselves and others. on ATM and credit card advance receipts. a conference inviting all the stakeholders in the issue of problem gambling from both the public and private sectors. that our business was responsible and to blame for the condition that she treated.
11. New Orleans site visit. 1998. Sept. if you will. It’s unusual for me to go a week without receiving more than one call from a senior casino executive about a customer that they have a concern about. and I just happened later that day to be meeting with the number two officer of the state police. and they refer those persons to our office for evaluation. National Gambling Impact Study Commission. The second training class is related to underage gambling. we have developed two original training classes for employees. All of our employees who work on or around the gaming floor either have or will participate in this training. Training for our security staff and others begins with an understanding of why minors are at risk for developing gambling disorders. 41-50. I’ve worked with a number of casinos in setting up procedures and policies with regard to intervention officers of the day or intervention officers as a group or a category. 11. Finally. and its objectives are to help our employees understand company policy related to problem gambling. specialized training is provided for those managers who volunteer to take a role in intervening with those customers suspected of have a gambling disorder. 1998. My experience.85 Reece Middleton. 65. Testimony of Tom Brosig. however. in working throughout the state of Louisiana. The first we call Red Flags and Referrals.86 85 National 86 Gambling Impact Study Commission. and we mentioned this earlier conversation and he got us in touch with the director of the state police. strict laws prohibit those under the legal age from participating in gambling activity. Testimony of Reece Middleton. As a matter of fact.Experts have told us to educate our employees and help them recognize the signs of disordered gambling behavior. the law in and of itself is not enough to ensure that minors do not gamble. executive director of the Louisiana Association on Compulsive Gambling: I’ve worked with a number of casinos in training their employees in signs and symptoms of compulsive gambling and underage gambling. Sept. and a system was established to make it easier and more workable and more convenient for a person to self-ban. New Orleans site visit. Our employees wear buttons with the message “WE check IDs” to provide a visible reminder to everyone that we will prevent underage gambling to the fullest extent possible. assessment and referral into treatment. New employees are introduced to Grand Casinos’ policies and practices regarding problem gambling during their orientation. senior supervisors. has been that the casino management is responsive to the request for self-banning. the way it came about that the self-banning law got more workable was at the request of a casino manager with whom I was meeting. In every gaming jurisdiction. and so on. In concert with the Minnesota Council on Compulsive Gambling. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 35 .
According to this testimony. reliable. Expert testimony and industry reports also helped refute claims by gambling opponents that casinos create a substitution effect. The information compiled in Casino Gaming in America presents material the NGISC gathered through extensive testimony and thorough research. as well as the fact that tax revenues from casino properties have led to community improvement projects that have helped transform local gaming communities. Various officials also testified to the significant charitable contributions of individual casinos in their areas and noted that substantial neighborhood improvement projects had been made possible due to casino funds. unemployment rates and unemployment insurance after the introduction of a casino property. Testimony from officials in states such as Mississippi. materials submitted to the NGISC indicated that. Independently derived statistical data from state and local governments across the country could now provide the actual. With the industry’s expansion beyond Nevada and New Jersey in the 1990s. Social Impact While opponents have purported that alleged “social costs” of gambling outweigh the economic benefits of introducing a casino. In these areas.VII. CONCLUSION Before the NGISC. cannibalizing other entertainment businesses in a given community. 36 Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association . the relatively young casino-entertainment industry was studied primarily through the use of models and theories. casino gaming has had a net positive impact in the communities where casinos operate. Frank Wolf sought to uncover when he outlined a work plan for the commission. To the contrary. in reality. The models and theories of the past could now be evaluated through the prism of experiences these states have had with casino gaming in recent years. In established gaming jurisdictions such as Nevada and New Jersey. this was no longer necessary. Louisiana and others revealed similarly favorable economic results from the introduction of gaming. the introduction of casino gaming into the community does not lead to an increase in crime or bankruptcy filings. The NGISC also heard from experts who refuted critics’ claims about alleged social costs of casino gaming. Iowa. factual and unbiased results Rep. the casino gaming industry actually contributes significant social benefits to communities in which it operates. generating investment and employment opportunities. whose employment and business opportunities have increased in casino communities. gaming has been a source of tremendous economic development. Submitted reports outlined specific instances where communities exhibited drops in welfare payments. gaming has helped rebuild a lagging tourism industry and revitalized once-depressed communities. several officials noted significant secondary new business growth in areas where casinos have been introduced. providing jobs and investment. Testimony from specific jurisdictions also pointed to the positive social impacts of casino gaming. This report serves as a comprehensive reference tool detailing the impact of casino gaming on our nation and discusses responsibilities and activities in the area of responsible gaming. Economic Impact According to testimony and reports submitted to the NGISC. finding particular benefits for minorities and women.
In addition to an in-depth discussion of prevalence. revealed the actual prevalence rate to be closer to 1 percent. Casino Gaming in America American Gaming Association 37 . Testimony also indicated that there have been several promising advances in problem gambling treatment strategies. Finally.S. The information gathered by the NGISC through research and witness testimony demonstrated that the casino industry is a highly regulated. including successful efforts by the industry-funded National Center for Responsible Gaming (NCRG) to create a field of gambling research that is earning the respect and participation of the global scientific community. testimony was presented indicating that both the casino gaming industry and individual gaming states have made significant progress in developing effective programs to promote responsible gaming among employees and patrons. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) as well as scrutiny from stockholders and the general public. as well as studies conducted on the commission’s behalf. Disordered Gambling and Responsible Gaming Finally. The industry is regulated by individual states. and public ownership of gaming-entertainment companies results in several additional levels of oversight from the U. experts presented information on current research and prevention efforts.Regulation Additional information presented to the NGISC revealed that the casino gaming industry is one of the most highly regulated industries in the United States. This oversight makes the casino gaming industry one of the most transparent industries in the country. the NGISC heard significant testimony and received several reports on the issue of disordered gambling. responsible business sector that benefits a broad cross-section of Americans. expert testimony presented to the NGISC. While opponents often put the number of people with gambling disorders at upwards of 11 percent of the population.
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