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MGM Springfield Revenue Nearly Flat In October

Updated at 2:10 p.m. 

The MGM Springfield casino took in $17.5 million from gambling last month, a decrease of less than 1% from September, but revenues remains well down from pre-pandemic levels.

When compared to October 2019, business was off 17.4% this past October. That's according to figures released by the Massachusetts Gaming Commission Monday.

New rules aimed at slowing a rise in cases of the coronavirus could further hamper MGM Springfield's revenue picture. Earlier this month, Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker tightened COVID-19 restrictions, forcing casinos and many other businesses to close by 9:30 p.m.

For MGM Springfield, that meant going from operating around the clock, to just 10 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. daily.

MGM said those newest restrictions caused the casino operator to either layoff or reduce the hours for about 250 workers.

Even before the hours restrictions, Massachusetts casinos were operating at a reduced capacity to promote social distancing, with fewer slot machines available and some table games not allowed.

The state gaming commission said Monday the two casinos and one slots parlor in Massachusetts combined to take in 88% of the gross gaming revenue when compared to a year ago, with half as many "gaming positions" available for use.

As for MGM Springfield, slot machines continue to generate the bulk of its gambling business. In October, they accounted for $13.5 million, with table games coming in a $3.98 million.

Massachusetts' other casinos are also struggling to get back to pre-pandemic figures. Encore Boston Harbor saw its business sag 4.3% in October, as compared to September. That represented about a 10% drop from the same time in 2019.

Plainridge Park slots parlor saw a slight uptick in October from the previous month, but was also down about 10% from October 2019. 

The state took in $19.6 million in tax revenue from the casinos in October, down $2.6 million from a year ago.

Correction: An earlier version of this report incorrectly stated the time by which many businesses must close in the state. It should have said 10:00 p.m.

Hoang 'Leon' Nguyen / The Republican / masslive.com
The Republican / masslive.com

Copyright 2020 New England Public Media

Adam is based at New England Public Radio’'s Berkshire County news bureau in Pittsfield, where he has been since August, 2015. He joined NEPR as a freelance reporter and fill-in operations assistant during the summer of 2011. For more than 15 years, Adam has had a number stops throughout his broadcast career, including as a news reporter and anchor, sports host and play-by-play announcer as well as a producer and technician.

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