is this money coming from? The money being lost is
truly lost, by the gambler and to the general
economy as well. With gasoline prices at nearly $3
per gallon, housing costs rising, and pension plans
in jeopardy, the casino cash machine will either run
out of gas or turn to even more desperate forms of
What is inevitable is Ohio casinos will be in
competition with Cedar Point, Kings Island, the
Browns, Bengals, the Buckeyes, the Indians and the
Reds, the Cavs and the Blue Jackets. The
entertainment and restaurant business, retail and
real estate, movie theatres and the most upscale
malls, all Ohio businesses will be in competition
with the casino industry. An industry that teaches
people to throw money away - just for fun.
Visit the Mountaineer Casino outside Newell, West
Virginia and look at the evidence. One of the only
new businesses the casino brought into the community
was a strip club, which was closed due to a fire.
Hancock County, home of the Mountaineer Casino has
an unemployment rate nearly 50% higher than the
visit Detroit, Michigan where three new casinos
promised to renew the downtown area. Casinos came to
town but lay-offs continued. The casino lights burn
brightly but people still desperately struggle to
pay their utility bills in a city named the “poorest
city in America” in 2004.
What is inevitable, is casinos are a great deal for
the people who own them. Everyone else gets a tip at
best. These small percentage cuts from the take will
hardly deal with the infrastructure costs, increased
crime, court costs, and lost revenue from local
casinos. Because no future state or local taxes can
be levied upon the casinos proceeds, communities can
expect no help from casino revenues for local
schools or urgent community needs.
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things have changed since 1996. There are now more
regional “convenience” based casinos in America.
There has also been a dramatic increase in tribal
gambling across the nation. What casino backers are
covering up is the real concern inside the industry
over market saturation.
Keith Andrews, Vice-President of Corporate Affairs
for Casino Windsor stated in 2005:
“The gaming market is dramatically different now
from when the temporary casino opened 10 years ago.
Then there was an ‘incredible’ demand for gaming and
growth was booming. Now the reality is that the
regional gaming market is not growing… We’re in a
market share fight. We have to do whatever we can to
capture our fair share.”
Andrews is only stating what the gambling industry
has known for years. Gambling is like a balloon. You
can only place so much air in the balloon before it
bursts. That’s the way I. Nelson Rose described the
gambling market back in 1991. Professor Rose is one
the leading pro-gambling academics in the world. He
predicted the current “Third Wave” of legalized
gambling would end within 40 years due to market
saturation, corruption, and a host of societal
issues. When Professor Rose made that prediction
tribal gambling barely existed in America.
Vegas is the best example of the serious
consequences of gambling market saturation. The
development of casinos around the nation and
particularly tribal casinos have radically impacted
the state of Nevada. On January 20, 2003 Nevada
Governor Kenny Guinn told state lawmakers:
“For years, our economy has depended almost
exclusively on tourism and gaming, rather than
exporting goods and services. Three out of four of
our tax dollars are collected from the sales and
gaming taxes; taxes vulnerable to swings in the
economy. Implicit in this strategy was a belief that
the revenues from gaming and tourism could keep pace
with our growing and diverse population.
Unfortunately this strategy has failed.”
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professor I. Nelson Rose describes Dr. Rachel
Volberg as “the leading expert” on compulsive
gambling in America. Dr. Volberg considers
18-21 year olds three times more likely to have
problems with gambling. Dr. Howard J. Shaffer,
director of the Harvard Medical School for Gambling
Addictions states: “Today, there are more children
experiencing adverse symptoms from gambling than
from drugs… and the problem is growing.”
In 2005 a major study was released from Cleveland
State University, paid for by casino backers. This
study made no attempt to hide the frightening
reality that opening statewide casinos in Ohio would
result in the serious addiction of at least 109,000
unable to control their lives and resist the urge to
gamble away everything.
109,000 homes where
a mom or dad or teenager is at risk of losing
everything they own and destroying their family.
109,000 thousand lives destroyed, families
destroyed, households and businesses destroyed,
Gambling addictions in America are rising at an
alarming rate. The National Council on Problem
Gambling recently acknowledged the old
estimate of one-percent of the population being
hooked is no longer valid. They project the number
is now closer to four to five percent of the
population at risk.
are among the most destructive of all addictions.
The National Gambling Impact Study, commissioned by
the Congress of the United States, reveals gambling
addictions lead to increased risks of serious health
problems, unemployment, divorce, bankruptcy and jail
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1. Work Force
West Virginia: Labor Market
information. July 2006.
2. U.S. Census Bureau, 2004 American
Community Survey, “Percent of People
Below Poverty Level in the Past 12
3. Crain’s Cleveland Business. Feb.
4. I. Nelson Rose. “The Rise and
Fall the Third Wave: Gambling will
be Outlawed in Forty Years.”
Gambling and Public Policy :
5. Koo, Jun, Ph. D. The Social Costs
of Casino Gambling in Ohio: A Review
of What is Known and Estimates of
Future Expenses. Maxine Goodman
Levin College of Urban Affairs.
August 8, 2005.
Council on problem Gambling.
Gambling Impact Study Commission
Final Report. June 18, 1999.