The introduction of video gambling in Illinois taverns and truck stops coincides with a drop in casino revenue. State forecasters have told lawmakers casino revenues continue to decline, and will probably continue to do so. “The fiscal year 2014 estimate of $316 million represents a $40 million decline from where we were,” Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability revenue manager Jim Muschinske said. “Logic dictates (the reason) probably relates to video gaming.”
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An Illinois Gaming Board spokesman points out casino revenue is down in other states, too, casting doubt upon the new games as the only reason. Nevertheless, Illinois Casino Gaming Association executive director Tom Swoik says the pond is just about fished out. “We believe saturation is here, and all you’re doing (with video and, potentially, more casinos and slot machines at horse tracks) is cannibalizing the patrons from going from one casino to another,” he said. “We’re not creating any new gamblers.”
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