Analyst sees little enthusiasm for Texas casino push

10 April 2013

A new push for gaming expansion in Texas drew muted commentary from analysts Tuesday.

They have been down that road before.

A Texas state senator said this week that he has support for legislation to bring 21 large and small casinos to Texas and create a state gaming commission.

Casino expansion bills surface routinely in the state’s biannual legislative sessions, but the measures have universally failed.

Union Gaming Group Managing Director Bill Lerner doesn’t see much difference with the latest proposal, which calls for a state constitutional amendment to expand gaming.

“The issue of bringing casinos to Texas has been around for quite some time, but we haven’t heard much optimism around potential passage,” Lerner told investors. “There are notable detractors against gaming expansion.”

The newest bill creates the Texas Gaming Commission and allows one casino each in Dallas, Fort Worth and San Antonio, with three additional casinos along the coast. Three racetracks in Dallas-Fort Worth, San Antonio and Houston could operate casinos, and nine small racetracks could apply for licenses to operate casinos or slot machines.

The Texas gaming tax rate would be 20 percent. If an operator invests more than $1 billion in a facility, the tax rate would be reduced to 15 percent.

A constitutional amendment, which requires a two-thirds vote in each house of the Texas Legislature, would bring the issue to voters and bypass Gov. Rick Perry’s veto. The governor has not supported expansion in the past.

The Legislature ends its session May 27 and won’t convene again until January 2015.

One of the primary arguments for casino expansion in Texas has been keeping tax dollars in the state. Texas residents travel to Indian casinos in Oklahoma and commercial casinos in Louisiana. Casinos in Texas could easily take business away from those markets.

Las Vegas-based Pinnacle Entertainment is the largest casino operator in Louisiana, with properties in Lake Charles, the Shreveport-Bossier City area and New Orleans. Pinnacle, which is buying rival Ameristar Casinos for an enterprise value of $2.8 billion, is acquiring the company’s under-construction casino in Lake Charles.

Pinnacle owns the Retama Park Racetrack near San Antonio.

“The Texas Legislature passing gaming would be a clear negative for Louisiana operators who pull significant visitation from the state,” Lerner said.

Related Links
Union Gaming Group Gaming Vendor Information
Texan Gambling


Copyright GamingWire. All rights reserved.
Featured Vendors
Casino Schedule Ease
Regulatory Management Counselors, P.C.
Casino Schedule Ease
Removing the chaos from casino staff scheduling one property at a time
Regulatory Management Counselors, P.C.
Over 35 years of experience serving the legal and regulatory needs of casino industry clients
Intercard, Inc.
Tableswin S.r.l.
Intercard, Inc.
The world leader in debit card technology with 30+ years of experience in over 3,500 locations
Tableswin S.r.l.
TablesWin represents the connection between technology, design and art.
Atrient
Zem Media
Atrient
Promotions, offers & drawings - how loyalty is rewarded.
Zem Media
Enhance the Guest Experience with Digital Signage Solutions featuring Easy-to-Use Content Management
Tejas Slots LLC
Payline Videos
Tejas Slots LLC
Upgrade Your Gaming Equipment & Generate Texas-Sized Revenues for Your Business
Payline Videos
Custom Video Solutions for Casinos & Gambling Websites!
Casino Network
iView Systems
Casino Network
20+ years experience selling refurbished slot machines, parts & glass for all major brands
iView Systems
Case management, incident, dispatch, identification and visitor reporting solutions for gaming.
Magenta Research
Rymax Marketing Services, Inc.
Magenta Research
The Leader in AV Switching and Extension.
Rymax Marketing Services, Inc.
Leader in creating award winning player & employee loyalty programs & events proven to increase ROI
TribalNet
Gaming Tickets, Inc.
TribalNet
18th Annual TribalNet Conference, November 6-9, 2017 at the Renaissance Glendale
Gaming Tickets, Inc.
35 years in the gaming industry - premium quality slot tickets, lottery tickets on time under budget
Slot Constructor, LLC.
Sunkist Graphics, Inc.
Slot Constructor, LLC.
Your source for custom game development services
Sunkist Graphics, Inc.
Specializing in the creation of best-of-breed gaming graphics - slot glass, sign faces, and more
Multi-Choice Cash (MCC)
Nathan Associates Inc.
Multi-Choice Cash (MCC)
Customized Cash Access Solutions for Gaming. Helping You Maximize Cash to the Casino Floor.
Nathan Associates Inc.
One of the oldest and most respected economic consulting firms in the U.S.
Casino City Press
Slot Machines Unlimited
Casino City Press
A leading publisher and distributor of casino and gaming business data and market research reports.
Slot Machines Unlimited
Exporter of IGT, Williams, AVP, Trimline, Aristocrat, Konami, Bally, & parts over 20 yrs experience


Your Guide to 16,306 Gaming Industry Suppliers