Saturday, January 2, 2010
NEW YEAR'S BUSINESS DEAD THIS YEAR
The Montana Clean Indoor Air Act, which banned smoking inside casinos and taverns, went into effect three months ago on October 1. Since that time the gaming revenues have dropped an average of 25% statewide as reported in the January issue of the Tavern Times. One statistic cited by the gaming route operators stated that machine play time per customer session has been substantially shortened since the ban went into effect. Smoking patrons that are still going to casinos to play the machines are playing a much shorter amount of time before cashing in and leaving. Since lower gaming revenues also equate to lower gaming taxes being paid, we wonder what our cities that have come to depend heavily on this source of revenue are going to do to cover this shortfall in income. Yet another problem our New Mayor and the Havre Council will have to deal with this year.
“Want to buy a casino?” is a question I have been asked numerous times in the last month. Good luck to our fellow business people with casino operations.