Michigan GCB to gain $50.7m in funding under 2024 budget proposals

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More than $50.7m has been earmarked for the Michigan Gaming Control Board via the state’s 2024 fiscal year budget, as yet more illegal gaming machines are seized following further raids.

Under the terms of the allocation, $3m will be directed towards the state-wide Don’t Regret the Bet responsible gaming campaign. The initiative, launched in May, is designed to encourage locals to wager responsibly, and features a range of tips and information.

Additional MGCB funding that forms part of the budget includes $2.2m for 16 full-time staff positions to support fresh programs, and $63,000 to compensate board members, who currently serve on an unpaid volunteer basis, for attending board meetings.

Furthermore, $2m in one-time funding will be gained to create an accounts receivable system that will be integrated within an existing internal agency database and the state’s financial system.

The bipartisan budget agreement is now headed to Governor Gretchen Whitmer’s desk for her consideration and signing into law, with funding allocations expected to take effect October 1, which marks the start of the state FY2024 budget calendar year.

“A well-funded gaming control agency is crucial for ensuring fair and honest gaming in the State of Michigan, preventing fraud and illegal activities, and addressing problem gambling,” commented Henry Williams, MGCB Executive Director. 

“I sincerely appreciate the support from Governor Whitmer and the legislature of a budget that will help the MGCB continue its responsible gaming messaging campaign, support our state’s growing gaming economy, and allow us to grow our team and make investments into efficient systems that help strengthen our mission and integrity while supporting those we serve.”

Additionally, the MGCB, alongside the region’s Department of Attorney General, have seized additional gambling machines from a Sunoco gas station in Belleville.

The state’s latest raid saw a coin-pusher machine confiscated after persons in charge failed to comply with a cease-and-desist letter that was personally served on March 8.

“Illegal gambling can lead to other, more serious, unwanted crimes that compromise the safety of our communities,” added Williams. 

“This investigation is a firm reminder that business owners should abide by the law and not offer illegal gaming in their establishments and, if they do, we are prepared to take action against them.”