Is legalized sports wagering going to be a win for Pennsylvania taxpayers?
It’s off to a fast start.
Sports betting took in more than $16 million for the month of December, the first full month for legal sports wagering in Pennsylvania. A total of $722,356 of tax revenue was generated according to the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board.
The numbers appear to be showing solid growth.
For the two weeks betting was available in November it brought in $1.4 million.
December also had more casinos participating.
Only one casino, Hollywood Casino at Penn National Race Course in Grantville was offering betting in November.
Two more, SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia, and Rivers Casino in Pittsburg began operating Dec. 15.
So the $16 million came from a full month at Hollywood and two weeks at SugarHouse and Rivers.
Still, the two latecomers quickly made up the difference, actually outpacing the revenue that Hollywood took in.
In the two weeks they were offering betting, SugarHouse brought in $5.5 million in sports betting revenue and Rivers brought in $5.6 million in sports betting revenue.
For the full month Hollywood had $5 million in sports betting revenue.
More sports betting providers are expected to be added as they begin operations.
Parx Casino in Bensalem, for example, began offering sports wagering in January. Its revenue will be added to the report next month.
In addition to the taxes, casinos must pay a $10 million licensing fee to offer sports betting in the state.
The gaming board said tax revenue generated by gaming in Pennsylvania is targeted for property tax reduction to Pennsylvania homeowners.