The rebound story that Louisiana casinos and racinos have been writing in 2021 took a slight step backward in May.
The four sectors of Louisiana’s gaming scene combined for $305,898,831 in revenue for the month, down 4.6% from the $320,543,027 reported in April.
The state’s gambling facilities are back in full operation after restrictions related to halting the spread of COVID-19 were lifted.
The state’s lone land-based casino, Harrah’s New Orleans, reported an increase month-over-month, rising 6.7% from $25.08 million in April to $26.75 million in May.
But according to figures reported on Friday by the Louisiana Gaming Control Board, the other three sectors fell in May.
Louisiana’s 12,000-plus video gaming terminals collected a combined total of $77.65 million in May, down from $84.7 million in April. That 8.3% decrease was the steepest among the four sectors.
At Louisiana’s 13 operational riverboat casinos, the revenue fell 4.4%, from a combined $175.8 million to $168.1 million in month-over-month numbers. The state’s racinos (slot machines at four race tracks) collectively took in $33.36 million, down 4.5% from April’s $34.94 million.
May was the first partial month under the new guidelines in New Orleans regarding coronavirus-related restrictions. As of May 15, fully vaccinated people were no longer required to wear masks in the Crescent City. Louisiana gaming facilities also now can run at full occupancy after it was reduced (when casinos were even open) for most of 2020.
The state's biggest financial jump this year came in March, when revenues rose 51% compared to February, to about $309.7 million.
The Louisiana legislature passed legislation regulating sports betting in the state on June 10.
A series of bills laid down the distribution of funds from Louisiana sports betting, how licenses would be distributed and provided for regulations. The legislation was sent to the desk of Gov. John Bel Edwards.
In November 2020, voters in 55 of Louisiana’s 64 parishes approved a ballot measure to permit wagering on sporting events.
Louisiana will issue 20 licenses among 15 casinos and five racinos and will levy a 15% tax on sports betting.