Maryland Casino and Sports Betting Dollars Raise the Stakes

Posted on: August 14, 2023, 01:40h. 

Last updated on: August 15, 2023, 09:55h.

The Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency is reporting year-over-year revenue increases nearly across the board. For fiscal year 2023, the agency that oversees casinos and sports wagering entities says it helped generate $1.589 billion in contributions to the state.

Maryland iGaming online sports betting gambling
Revenue generated by gaming and sports betting increased by 4% in fiscal year 2023, according to a new report from the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency. (Image: Capital News Service)

Total sales, according to the agency, topped $2.764 billion, an increase of nearly 4% from FY2022.

Broken down into separate parts, the FY2023 numbers include $848.1 million from casinos, which is up nearly 2% from last year. Lottery profits returned to Maryland came in at $714.3 million, a 6% increase. Sports wagering brought in $25.3 million, with an additional $1.2 million from daily fantasy sports.

Maryland Lottery and Gaming is the state’s fourth-largest source of revenue after income, sales, and corporate taxes.

Lottery profits contribute to the Maryland General Fund, which provides budgets for a wide range of vital state programs, including schools, public health and safety services, and environmental initiatives,” said Maryland Lottery and Gaming Director John Martin.

Maryland’s six casinos reported revenue increases from slot machines and table games adding up to $2.060 billion. Casinos pay $425 per slot machine and $500 per table game in annual assessments to the problem gambling fund. The potential for problem gambling is an area of focus for some lawmakers as they gear up to debate online games.

Legislative Momentum for iGaming  

Mobile wagering launched in November 2022, which expanded Maryland’s sports wagering market. As that market grows, it’s drawing attention once again to the adoption of iGaming, virtual slot machines, and other casino games.

It’s expected that iGaming legislation willl come up again in the 2024 session that begins in January. But by mid-November, the Lottery and Gaming Control Agency is expected to submit to state lawmakers a report on iGaming in other states.

Among the items expected to be addressed in that report are the potential benefits of a legal iGaming market in Maryland and the impact it could have on problem gambling.

“I would vote against that in a ‘New York Minute,’” said state Sen. Katherine Klausmeier, (D-Baltimore) “It’s just too easy to lose money.”

The National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence of Maryland, along with the Maryland Center of Excellence on Problem Gambling, also opposes iGaming. The groups point to evidence of increased access to internet casino games, including poker, blackjack, and roulette, leading to increases in the prevalence of problem gambling.

Advocates argue iGaming would create a new education funding stream and boost state revenue by allowing players from different states to compete in betting games, increasing the amount of money in the game.

Add Another Mobile Sportsbook to the Tally

The number of mobile sportsbooks in Maryland increased to 11 in July, and then to 12 in August. That’s after license approval was granted for Greenmount Station and its operator partner, Parx Interactive, according to the Maryland Lottery and Gaming Control Agency. There are also 10 retail sportsbooks in the state.

During July, sportsbooks generated $3,312,623 in contributions to the state. Mobile wagering led the way with $3,081,264 in state profits, with retail sportsbooks contributing $231,369.

State officials expect additional retail locations and mobile sportsbooks to launch in the near future.

As both sides line up for a spirited debate over iGaming, look for more language in the bills to address education funding, which is projected to reach a nearly $2 billion deficit in 2027.

As of now, if iGaming legislation were to become law in 2024, Maryland’s six casinos would be allowed to operate the online games.