Study: Sports betting in RI will bring in far less money than initially expected

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EAST PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — A recent study conducted by Christiansen Capital Advisors, LLC, shows some startling projections for gaming revenue in Rhode Island.

Some of the big takeaways from the study were that sports betting won’t bring in nearly as much money as initially expected and that a new Taunton casino would deal a detrimental blow to Rhode Island gaming revenue.

The study estimated sports betting would only bring in $2.7 million for the state by the end of the current fiscal year in July.

That’s significantly lower than initial state estimates of $23.5 million, or Governor Gina Raimondo’s recently scaled-back projection of $11.5 million.

“CCA would recommend that the State of Rhode Island should prepare for the worst and hope for the best because revenue derived from sports wagering will be inherently volatile producing years of feast and famine,” the study determined.

The study also found a new Taunton casino would greatly reduce gaming revenue in Rhode Island.

For example, if the Taunton casino opened on July 1, 2021, the study estimated total gaming revenue in Rhode Island would decline by $79.8 million, and the state’s share of these revenues would fall by $37.3 million between the fiscal year 2021 and fiscal year 2024.

The study determined if no new casinos open in Massachusetts or Connecticut, gaming revenue would continue to grow in Rhode Island until the fiscal year 2021. They expect it would then flatten out for several years without further expansion of gaming in Rhode Island.

To read the full study, click here.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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