Encore Boston Harbor, Massachusetts

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission has reflected on “a productive year” after releasing a 2022 annual report detailing the state regulator’s operations from July 1, 2021, through June 30, 2022. 

Cathy Judd-Stein, MGC Chair, noted that the fiscal year largely “represented adaptation and preparation” as Massachusetts looked to legalise its own sports wagering ecosystem.

Much of the 12 month period, said Judd-Stein, comprised monitoring legislation and preparing for the possibility of a widened net of responsibilities, with expertise and further learnings coming via collaborative discussions with legalised jurisdictions and a slew of events across the nation.

Massachusetts subsequently launched retail sports betting on January 31, 2023, with its mobile counterpart following suit a little over one month later on March 10, 2023.

“Advanced preparation paid off,” she said. “As the first quarter of FY23 came to realise, the MGC immediately launched into the new industry, developing a regulatory framework, promulgating related regulations, addressing staffing and resource needs, and setting critical deadlines.”

The state regulator revealed that gross gaming revenue across the region’s three commercial gaming establishments reached $1.1bn through the aforementioned time frame, which generated $311.5m in tax revenue for the Commonwealth.  

“For the casino properties, FY22 brought ongoing increased customer demand, and stabilising workforce needs”

Encore Boston Harbor reported $710.15M in gross gaming revenue, comprising $384.25m and $325.88m from slots and tables, and generated $177.54m.

Fellow category one licensee MGM Springfield saw slots and table GGR close the time frame at $203.3m and $54.53m, respectively, for a total of $257.84. A total of $64.46m was generated in taxes.

In its seventh year of operation, the category two Plainridge Park Casino, reported $141.78M in gross gaming revenues, of which slots made up the entire amount.

This generated $56.71m in tax dollars to local aid and $12.76m in assessments to the Race Horse Development Fund for a total of $69.47m in taxes. 

“For the casino properties, FY22 brought ongoing increased customer demand, and stabilising workforce needs, job fairs and applicable employee exemption requests,” commented Judd-Stein. 

“The MGC continued reviewing reporting for vendor and supplier spends as purchases of goods and services returned to usual volumes, which also brought the return of vendor advisory team meetings between the licensees and community partners, guided by Commission staff. 

“My fellow commissioners and I are proud of what we have accomplished over the last fiscal year”

“All efforts were effective. Where cumulative GGR had reached $2.4bn during FY21, the GGR across the industry for FY22 alone amounted to $1.1bn, with tax revenues up more than $78m over the previous fiscal year.”

In addition, the MGC has hailed the promotion of responsible gaming and the provision of tools for patrons to manage their play in the form of programs.

During FY22, 1,150 individuals were enrolled in the voluntary self-exclusion scheme, which permits individuals to withdraw from casino gambling, and now sports wagering, for a predetermined amount of time.

In addition, in excess of 31,000 are signed-up to PlayMyWay, a free budgeting tool that lets players track their play and receive automatic notifications as they get closer to their pre-set budget amount. 

The offering, which is now available at all three Massachusetts casinos, launched at MGM Springfield at the end of March in FY22. 

“My fellow commissioners and I are proud of what we have accomplished over the last fiscal year on behalf of the residents of the Commonwealth and invite the public to continue to review those efforts,” concluded Judd-Stein. 

“This annual report details the hard work of the entire team at the MGC, and I want to commend them all for their consistent, thorough, and transformative efforts and their genuine commitment to public service during this fiscal year and in the busy period to come.”