July 25th, 2008


Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board
Commonwealth Tower, Strawberry Square
303 Walnut Street, 5th Floor
Harrisburg, PA 17101


Doug Harbach or Richard McGarvey (717) 346-8321

PGCB Report Provides Impact of Slot Machine Revenue On Pari-mutuel Wagering

HARRISBURG: The Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board today released its first benchmark report to determine the impact of slot machine play on Pennsylvania pari-mutuel wagering.

The report, which compares the status of pari-mutuel wagering between the years of 2006 and 2007, focuses on revenue from slots play and the various indicators of pari-mutuel health such as purse amounts, racing handle(the total amount wagered by patrons) and exporting of live racing signals to other properties both inside and outside Pennsylvania.

"This first report is important because establishes a baseline from which to compare subsequent years of pari-mutuel activity," says Melinda Tucker, the PGCB Director of Racetrack Gaming. "Future reports, including next year's report with complete figures for 2008, will provide a better and clearer picture of the future for horse and harness racing in Pennsylvania, and the impact of slots gaming at those facilities."

Gaming Control Board member and agriculturalist Gary A. Sojka says that this type of report is important because it helps gauge one of the major objectives of the Pennsylvania Race Horse Development and Gaming Act: reinvigoration of the horse and harness racing industry."

"The success of our racing industry has a direct effect on farmland preservation and agricultural activity in the commonwealth", Sojka states

The report can be downloaded from the link under the "What's New" section of the Gaming Control Board's web site, Highlights of the report include:

  • The industry total of all purses earned in Pennsylvania increased by 162% from $55 million in 2006 to $144 million in 2007;
  • In 2007 there were six slots facilities operating in Pennsylvania. They collectively contributed $128.5 million to the PA Race Horse Development Fund of which $102.8 million went directly toward racing purses;
  • The industry total of all race days in Pennsylvania increased by 10.85% from 765 race days in 2006 to 838 race days in 2007;
  • The industry total of the live racing handle decreased by 1% from $41.3 million in 2006 to $40.9 million in 2007. This type of pari-mutuel revenue decline is consistent with an industry trend that predates the passage of the PA Racehorse Development and Gaming Act, but is predictable since there has been substantial, disruptive construction at or around the pari-mutuel facilities in the Commonwealth;
  • The industry total of all exports (in-state and inter-state) in Pennsylvania increased by 10.8% from $493.7 million in 2006 to $547 million in 2007.