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State casino revenue hits highest mark ever in just ended fiscal year

DES MOINES — Iowa’s state-licensed casinos saw a post-pandemic surge and set a record for the fiscal year that ended in June. Racing and Gaming Administrator Brian Ohorilko says gross revenue was more than one-and-a-half billion dollars. ($1,575,410,919)

“The adjusted gross receipts this last fiscal year were our highest to date,” he says. Ohorilko says with many entertainment venues still not open — people visited one of the 19 casinos. “We have seen record numbers at all of the casinos. Attendance still hasn’t bounced back completely — but the folks that are attending are spending their discretionary income” according to Ohorilko.

The gross revenue is $412 million more than the previous fiscal year, and attendance was up by more than 860,000 compared to the previous year when there were pandemic shutdowns. “It really has been a very interesting time to be in this industry, no different than other industries. Prior to the pandemic the casino business had been growing slightly — but had fairly stabilized — it was a very predictable market,” Ohorilko says.

He says the last five or six years had seen some modest increases or decreases in casino revenue. “Attendance numbers had continued to decline and that was the trend we were seeing prior to the pandemic. Obviously, with the pandemic, it really impacted the casinos. A few of them even had to take advantage of some of the federal assistance that was available. A number of employees were furloughed during this period of time,” Ohorilko says. And then coming out of the pandemic, there is no doubt some pent-up demand.”

Ohorilko believes the post-pandemic surge is not a new upward trend. “I think most people in the industry are cautiously optimistic that things will continue to be good and that there won’t be too much leveling off,” he says, “but I do think most people expect at some point that we will have some stabilization.”

The casino news comes on the heels of the news by the Iowa Lottery that they had set a revenue record through May with the June numbers still remaining to be tallied for their fiscal year.

Here are the comparisons of gross revenue for this fiscal year and last:
Ameristar II (2020 FY) $125,069,899 (2021 FY) $165,813,532
Casino Queen – Marquette (2020 FY) $16,774,521 (2021 FY) $18,122,047
Catfish Bend Casino (2020 FY) $32,120,253 (2021 FY) $43,312,686
Diamond Jo -Dubuque (2020 FY) $56,288,403 (2021 FY) $68,075,215
Diamond Jo -Worth (2020 FY) $66,176,954 (2021 FY) $95,879,440
Grand Falls Casino Resort (2020 FY) $51,068,556 (2021 FY) $77,985,618
Hard Rock Casino (2020 FY) $61,131,382 (2021 FY) $87,071,790
Harrah’s Council Bluffs (2020 FY) $52,346,691 (2021 FY) $58,119,156
Horseshoe Casino Council Bluffs (2020 FY) $141,079,667 2021 FY $180,348,582
Isle of Capri -Bettendorf (2020 FY) $51,185,660 (2021 FY) $68,543,830
Isle Casino Hotel Waterloo (2020 FY) $65,610,428 (2021 FY) $88,403,509
Lakeside Casino (2020 FY) $40,140,089 2021 FY $47,606,985
Prairie Meadows Racetrack & Casino (2020 FY) $157,183,728(2021 FY) $206,650,185
Q Casino (2020 FY) $39,695,531 (2021 FY) $50,257,313
Rhythm City Casino (2020 FY) $64,095,082 (2021 FY) $110,258,958
Riverside Casino (2020 FY) $76,697,150 (2021 FY) $116,284,366
Wild Rose – Clinton (2020 FY) $23,962,022 (2021 FY) $32,920,515
Wild Rose – Emmetsburg (2020 FY) $20,300,642 (2021 FY) $27,418,527
Wild Rose – Jefferson (2020 FY) $22,489,579 (2021 FY) $32,338,665

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