The heyday of gambling is over….. or is it really? Recent news coverage has highlighted the closure of casinos in tourist heavy gambling areas such as Atlantic City, Las Vegas and Biloxi. Atlantic City has taken an especially hard hit with 12 casino closings in the last year, the most recent being the Trump Plaza closure. Las Vegas has seen less of a decline, however several casinos, including the Stardust, have been closed in the last decade. Even Biloxi has been hit, with the Margarivitivlle Casino filing for bankruptcy on closing their doors on September 17th, 2014.
Experts argue as to whether or not the trend is due to a struggling economy with people having less leisure money for spending, or an overall lack of interest in gambling. Some even argue that young adults, who use to make up a large percentage of the gambling population, are opting for ‘ clubbing’ instead. Forbes recently researched the topic, finding that more people are opting of the privacy of legal online gambling sites. As traditional casino gambling changes, one area of the industry seems to be booming.
Indian reservations in many states have seen a rise in locals visiting their casinos and are building new or additional casinos. Most casinos strike deals with tribal councils, where each member of the tribe receives a yearly dividend from the casino owners simply for allowing the casino to exist on Indian land. Indian reservation casinos have also seen a substantial growth over the past few years, as locals have less spending money to travel far, so prefer to spend money locally. Less travel distance means more money that patrons can use on gambling. This means a rise in casinos on local Indian tribal lands.
Some of the new casino’s either being built, petitioned for or voted on include casinos in Madera, California and Kenosha, Wisconsin. The casino in Madera, according to SF Gate, will be included as a ballot referendum for local voters named Proposition 48, on the November 4th ballot, allowing the casino to be built. The Menominee Tribal Nation in Kenosha, is in the process of petitioning the Governor, who has the final say on casinos in the state of Wisconsin.
Whatever changes take place in the gambling industry in the next few years, one thing is for sure… people still love to gamble. While the gambling means and locations might differ, Indian reservations can benefit off of the changes and bring money to their local tribal councils.