West Virginia’s Gambling Demise: An Inside Look at Legal State-Run Crime

I am writing this mostly to express my opinions and views from a gambler who lives in West Virginia. I have provided some facts and estimated numbers based on information that I have read, been told, and experienced. I am not affiliated with any of the industries mentioned. The State of WV should get out of the gambling business. I am not saying to make it illegal; I am merely saying they need to let it be run by someone other than a government body.

Governments notoriously take advantage of the system to use these things as slush funds. WV is no different. If they want more money they simply raise fees or lower payouts.

1217823794624_640West Virginia has seen a decline in lottery revenue over the last few years. While you may not immediately make the connection between lottery and slots, allow me to explain.

Lottery has been in WV since 1986. The state needs this money like we need water and air. Nearly every attempt to allow gambling in the state had been met with little success until 1994 when the state allowed video lottery. This act classified “slot” machines as Video Lottery Terminals. This was initially for the states 4 racetracks. However, in 2001 the “Limited Video Lottery Act” (LVL) was passed.

“The machines were legal, the payout’s were not”

Poker machines had been in most bars and clubs in the state prior. The owners may or may not have paid out. The one’s that did pay out were called Gray machines because the machines were legal; the pay out’s were not.

It was common knowledge at this time that the state agencies were aware of them and would occasionally stage raids; so to speak. The bars in good standing (I don’t know what that meant) would receive a warning prior. The bars that were targets would not receive any warning. I believe this was allowed to go on because the state wanted it to become commonplace and thus, get less resistance later when they wanted to swoop in and regulate the criminal activity.

The LVL act of 2001 allowed the state to purchase machines and have a bidding process for the licenses. One license for each machine. I am not sure what it was in 2001. However, in 2011 they re-bid them and the price per license averaged around $16,000 each. There are 10,000 machines total. Quite a hefty amount for West Virginia.

You might be saying, wait a minute; WV has Casinos in the state. Yes we do, but not until very recently. Prior, they were just racetracks, either horse or dog tracks, and were not allowed to have table games as they do now. It is all still controlled by the WV state lottery regardless. I know there was some “deals” that went on to allow the table games to enter the scene but I do not know many details, yet.

Lets say that I want to open a place and have LVL machines. I am not allowed to have more than 5 machines in any one location unless I am a fraternal group. Then I am allowed 10. I cannot just call up the state and purchase a license. There are none, remember? I will need to contact a company that won the bid.

The WV lottery commission takes 52% of the revenue leaving 48% for the owner of the licenses/machine. Also, note it is tradition for WV to raise their amount at will. The remainder (48%) is shared between the owner of the bar or lounge and license/machine owner. There isn’t a lot of meat left on the bone for the owner of a bar. However, most of these are in what is known as a “Lounge”. The lounge’s are essentially bars but the focus is on gambling.

The profit margin is truly slim, as they can only have 5 in any one location and is lucky to get 22% of the revenue. Not 22% profit; all expenses come out of that amount, rent, utilities, labor, cable, internet, food and drink. Even 22% of the Jackpots. The lounges normally give away Soda, Chips, and some sort of food item. They are not allowed to give beer away, nor are the Casinos. Why? You ask. The state of WV says it is an enticement for people to gamble. I will give you a moment to chuckle…

The lounges are NOT permitted to advertise or display signage that is related to gambling. It cannot say Casino, Lucky 7’s, High Rollers, or even have a depiction of dice on a sign. It can only display a WV lottery sign.
What this structure does is require the lounges to hold an ABC license as well. The more lounges (only 5 Machines in each) the more ABC licenses the state sells.

So, it’s 2014 and the Lottery is crying because the revenue is down. They are quick to blame the legalization of gambling in neighboring states. Mike McKown of the state budget office said this, “the downward trend is due to out-of-state competition by racetracks and casinos in border states, such as Pennsylvania.” McKown also said that the unstable economy is likely keeping fewer people from gambling.

– See more at: http://westvirginia.watchdog.org/3418/west-virginia-lottery-revenues-declining/#sthash.AoGLsc5d.dpuf

While that is true; it is only a small part of the drop in revenue.

The same article goes on to say, “There was significant growth last year, but it was across the board in a couple different areas,” said Mark Muchow, deputy secretary of the Department of Revenue. “Non-farm payroll employment actually increased a little bit during the year, and the increases were concentrated in the energy sector.

  • As a matter of fact the article says it was 149% above projection. It doesn’t sound like the economy could possibly be the issue.
  • As a matter of fact according to the 2012 WV Lottery financial report. The WV lottery operated at a 1.9% overall operating expense. It returned $81 million back to the state.
  • What business or government operates on a 1.9% operating expense? I only wish. This is simply either a lie, or they are taking way more money than they should be.
  • While the proceeds are suppose to be for education, roads and the elderly, looking at this report is like reading Swiss cheese.
“The Lottery’s mission is to generate revenue to fund programs
benefiting education, senior citizens, tourism and other programs that
the Governor and the Legislature deem appropriate.”

The public is being sold a bill of goods that doesn’t exist.

The State continues to propagate these lies by only advertising the money that they use for the elderly and education. Most people outside of the government have no idea that the money is being used however the Governor deems appropriate.

We are used to being lied to, the bigger issue is that the LVL machines have been continually tightened making people play them less.

They have not learned that if there is no ass in the chair, there is no chance at the customer’s money. They have furthered the problem by allowing fewer small winners and concentrating on jackpots. You know the magic amount that you have to pay 37% tax on. Again, the state’s accounting is delusional as most of these people fortunate enough to win a jackpot will not have to pay taxes. This is either because they aren’t required to file taxes or they have losses to offset them.

I have personally watched as this happened. I have had many hits that paid high amounts in the past. I usually document my bigger hits by taking pictures and in comparing them, noticed the same hits previously paid more. I have also witnessed the state removing individual games from machines and changing them before re-installing them remotely. You know, if they feel like they are playing well, they probably are. Anyone who sits down in Vegas long enough can usually tell right away those slots are far looser. Yes it is that obvious.

You may ask yourself; who makes these evil super low-payback machines designed to be manipulated? They are all made by IGT (International Gaming Technology). Who manufactures many of the slots you see today. They are the worlds largest interactive video gambling company.

The point is that the WV lottery configures and bastardizes them however they wish, which is always in their favor, not the players. One example is that IGT’s enchanted Unicorns game is intended to have a possible 3 rows of Unicorns. The machines in my local lounges only have 2 rows. The WV Lottery monitors these games, live. What I mean by live is that they have a direct connection to each of the machines. I have witnessed many occasions where the internet drops out and the machines shut down until the internet is restored, and there is no one else regulating them.

See more at: http://www.state.wv.us/lottery/CountyMunDistribution.htm

Doing the Math it All Adds up Right?

No. The total revenue amount is usually around 10% of the amount wagered monthly. So, a location that has $263,000 played, (Average for my area) in a month will produce around $26,300 in revenue. The Lottery keeps $13,676. Leaving $12,624 for the machine owner to share with the lounge. Approx. $5786.00 for the lounge. If you consider that the lounge operates 600 hours a month; that is $4,350 in labor at min wage. Average $1000 for rent. Utilities, insurance, and supplies could easily account for another $2500 per month. You can see expenses $2000+ higher than revenue, or a loss of $2000. The state profits the most from this scenario.

There is also a mysterious skim fund that has alluded many… until now!

It is a fund that is been used to help problem gamblers across the state. It is supposed to have 10% set aside at all times. I have spoken with people who were actually part of the board that set up the problem gambler program. The majority of the fund cannot seem to be found anymore. Money is being set aside for it. Last I heard it was only accessible to the Governor. With only 1 million per year being donated to 1800gambler.net where is the rest? Maybe it is not so legal after all.

See more at: http://www.wvalvloa.org/

The program for problem gamblers is essentially nonexistent. It usually includes a line at the end of a WV Lottery commercial stating “Please play responsibly”. While there is finally a phone number to a hotline established, it is only to refer you to a doctor or therapist. One that you must pay for yourself.

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I am a husband, and father. I take both seriously. I have lived long enough to know that whatever I do needs to be fun or it’s just a waste. Originally from West Virginia and watched from the time when gambling was illegal to now. Frankly, I think it was run more honestly when the criminals were in control.
15 comments on “West Virginia’s Gambling Demise: An Inside Look at Legal State-Run Crime
  1. ralph says:

    Great article. One thing I’d like to correct you about though, WV is only one of 5 states in the country that does NOT allow you to write down your losses!

    In other words, if you’re a WV resident and you play video lottery machines anywhere, not only in WV, and you sign a W2-G form, you owe the state of WV 6.5% of that amount on the W2-G form whether you won or lost money at the end of the year!!

    I live in Morgantown and frequently played these machines at a casino in Pennsylvania, high limit machines, had dozens upon dozens of these W2-G forms yet at the end of the year had lost a large amount of money yet still had to pay 6.5% in WV tax for the amount of W2-G forms that I signed!!

    If you’re a WV resident and you play these machines, regardless of where they are, unless they’re outside the U.S., you need to have your head examined. One simply will NEVER come out a winner, playing on a consistant basis, in beating the machine odds, then having to pay state tax even when you’re an overall loser.

    • Rob Man says:

      While you are correct, I was speaking more to the fact that disabled and retired individuals are not required to file taxes, at all. Beyond that you are still allowed to deduct your losses against winnings on your federal taxes. You may also deduct any taxes you pay to the state previously on your federal taxes. Of course assuming you can itemize. If not then you are totally screwed and must pay the entire tax to both the state and IRS.

      • well I live in W. Va. and retired from the workforce, then a little later, got social security disability, then old age retirement social security and I never stopped having to pay taxes, usually on low amounts after putting down as head of household and 2 dependents, and I won $10,000 and taxes were over $4,000 and I was screwed as I’d already paid a car off, lol and didn’t get any money back as I had never saved no proof of losses, so I u pped what I paid to them for a whole year to even end up paying some at end of that year. ugh and yes the crooks did pay out more on video games and the at home poker games – all winnings if you were lucky with housse pigging a small amount in reference to what irs and state would have charged. So funny. Govt is indeed biggest winner

  2. miss marri says:

    Great article. I realize many states have resorted to these gambling parlors on every corner, within a mile of my house, there are at least a dozen, including a Perkins family restaurant that now serves beer. Legalizing and promoting this for state revenue has never been a sane solution to fixing the economy and states budgeting. Calculating the math is not my strong suit, but escalation of social problems and criminal activity resulting from excessive amounts of parlors is the focus of my comment here.
    Several years ago, I had dinner at a WV Casino and walked around with my jaw dropped as I watched something that was very saddening. As a mental health therapist, I had no experience with the magnitude of the gambling problem as it was not my specialty. What I witnessed was sickening. So many people sitting at these machines and disconnected from human contact. I observed behaviors, one man with a stop watch that timed his spins. People tapping machines, rubbing machines, faces in machines, those sitting back relaxed, and most seats filled. People walking through the casino had the look of being zoned out. One woman told me that she had a stroke the year before and was taken by ambulance, and more upset by having to leave her machine that she was certain was about to hit than her medical condition at the time.
    My question is unanswerable: How much of our public assistance and medicare dollars are going into these machines, from those who can afford it the least? I did not gamble, but am a smoker. Without meaning to be judgemental, the trance like people that I witnesses back in 2005 was heart breaking.
    I frequent local restaurants with friends and about the same time, smoking sections were banned in the county that I reside. Aha, I discovered the game rooms-where friends and I could go and smoke after a meal. Once we were told that it was for players only, so we put a $5 in the machine and did not know what we were doing. Years passed and I experienced some personal problems that led to depression. Friends that smoke and myself found ourselves spending more time in the game room so that we could smoke while talking, but still not gambling. One by one, myself included, we began gambling in these restaurants.
    FACTS: #1) WV is 2nd or 3rd in the US top states for mental illness (much of
    which is depression and/or anxiety disorders. Conditions which
    often result from distrust of humans, fears, financial problems,
    relationship problems, medical problems, etc. and which often
    lead to person seeking escape from distressing symptoms.
    #2)A high percentage of smokers suffer mental illness (80-90%)
    #3) Smokers have an addictive personality
    #4) Table gamblers tend to be more excitement seeking, while slot
    machine gamblers tend to be more escaping circumstances.
    CONCLUSION: The state of WV has legalized and promoted gambling, with parlors on every corner. They have targeted the weakest. They have taken away the right to smoke in public places, regardless of the restaurant owners choice to have a smoking section, enticing the most addictive personalities wo suffer mental illness to resort to gaming rooms for socialization and escape isolating behaviors., with the knowledge that these people will eventually play the machines as a form of escape. Yes they have allocated money for problem gambling, but do not actually provide the service.
    RESULTS OF SITUATION: The brain chemistry changes in the compulsive gambler. Pensions are lost. Lives are lost to suicide as a result. There are more white collar crimes. Ralph is right, heads need examined, but the greedy state of WV need some attorneys to file class action as they are completely aware of the consequences of their actions on the people who are most vulnerable. I do not have the solution to the economy and West Virginias economic problems but this is a bad solution. All compulsive gamblers need to document all wins and losses and file a schedule C and register as a professional gambler.

  3. Chris Miller says:

    I have gambled all over the USA and Canada and I have never been ripped off so fast in my years. Most place you put in $100 and play for hours, in WV 5 minutes is all it takes to loos your money,and I mean Loose.
    Most gamblers feel there is a chance that if they stick with a machine they can get their money back to keep playing, NOT IN WV.
    The government in WV has done what the Mafia tried to do for years, Legalize Stealing… The WV Government puts out these machines with FALSE hope ( AND they God Damn know this too) of you winning and there is NO chance at all. They know very well that no one will win so they advertise gambling in WV, your much better off saving your money flying to Vegas for 3 days and play out there, I know you will win your money back for the hotels, trips and food you spend, and maybe even get ahead a few buck, but they Stupid little States are just another tax on the WV people and for the sate officials to Steal money from people. After all the people of WV need to ask for an Audit of the Lottery money and the casino money, bet there will be a lot of officials going to jail if they do this, Oh and have the FEds do the audit not Billy-Bob’s Uncle…who is in on it all.

  4. miss marri says:

    Regarding paying tax on amounts $1200 and above. The casino’s have banned people that hang around and sign for winners, or professional non tax filing citizens. However, all these parlors have direct lines to a signer that will appear within 10 minutes to sign for the winner for a fee of about 10%. So if you are lucky enough to win $2000 (rare in WV), the signer takes $200, the employee expects at least 10% or $200, and you get $1600. By the time this happens, you have probably spent at least $12,000. Not exactly a win. These coffee shops that call in a signer, knowing well that this person did not play the machine is committng tax fraud, as is the winner and signer. This needs to stop. The state is aware and allows this, otherwise there would not be any asses in any chairs. Also, you can only file losses with IRS if you file long form, so there are many that do not have that benefit. This is creating a huge rise in white collar crimes. The state is turning their cheek and should be held accountable for their knowledge in this, while attacking those who claim their winnings unknowingly of the process and knowing that paying a signer is FRAUD!

  5. miss marri says:

    The state of WV should be sued. There should be a class action and when gamblers prove what they have lost and that they suffer addiction or mental illness, the state should be forced to return money and shut down these places. They lure smokers, who have high rate of depression. They are targetting the weak, the broken, and those who can afford it the least. They may as well have a big bowl of pills and narcotics that customers can pick from for a price, and if you pick winner, you get arrested at your car. And dont think for a second that drugs are not being run out of a particular chain of coffee shops. I have repeatedly witnessed an employee dealing big time, probably for the owner. West Virginia is the sickest and most corrupt state in the nation. I see much more than I speak. We are not all stupid here.

    • I am a compulsive gambler, I switched to bingo playing (no machines or tips allowed for me) and it fed my addictive traits and I saved money from the time I stopped the other gambling. But even bingohalls are crooks. They pay low to patron and high to themselves and have family working and sticking tips in pocket allnight. Bathrooms are nasty, the food not good (food also MEMBER OF FAMILY )( And they are trying to pass a law not to let FEDERAL audit any gambling in W. Va. OMG I knew years ago when tghe state allowed gambling they were taking from the poor who take from the taxpayers. Though I worked most of the time. Either way most of money from the “legal gambling” goes to the owners or the state, the illegal ones you did better in the day haha

    • in WV people in jails can get alcohol and liquor and gamble table games – of course somebody is crooked there too. It’s all bad vices, that good people end up paying for more than the people doing it.

  6. N RF says:

    Actually, it not illegal for someone else to sign the tax form for you if you hit a jackpot. I work in a hot spot and the lottery commission would shut us down if we refused to let a person holding the winning ticket to get their cash out. In other words, you can hit a $4000 jackpot, get the ticket, walk out the door and hand it to a complete stranger and they can legally cash the ticket. It CLEARLY STATES” the bearer of the ticket” NOT WHO WON it….Ive seen the lottery commission shut down places for refusing to cash out a ticket.

  7. N RF says:

    As far as the smoking, we have a smoking ban and have had one since 2011 and it has not harmed us, We DO NOT DEAL DRUGS…it sounds like miss marri has had a thing or two in her past…if you dont like them, stay out! LOL Simple. Im not defending them, but Im just saying that they pay a decent wage with the tips that I get and with a family, I need this job. the people who come in our place ( one of the best in the county and the state) know full well that they could and probably will lose money. They know this is why its called GAMBLING…

  8. James Jones says:

    I’ve read thru all the comments and couldn’t agree more. Personally I do not visit any of these so called VLT parlors. I do however visit our Northern Panhandle casinos on occasion. I say occasion because here in the Northern Panhandle of WV we neighbor PA and OH which also have casinos within an hour’s drive and those are the ones I most frequent. In Ohio I have Hollywood Casino and in PA I have The Rivers in Pittsburgh and The Meadows in Washington. My wife and I prefer The Meadows but as of late they also have tightened their machines (new owners). My state’s lottery Commissions doesn’t have a clue on how to run a casino based business they as have already been stated in the article use the casinos as a cash cow to bolster tax revenues. Every quarter without fail as the article states and as our newspapers print our casinos lose revenue compared to last year’s revenue. The casinos excuses are because of a smoking ban at Mountaineer and close competition from other states to both Wheeling Island and Mountaineer which is partially the problem. The casinos and the lottery commission don’t have a clue, they blame everything under the sun but ignore the real reason and the real reason is the slots are so tight that in the winter you can go into one of these casinos and lose your bankroll so fast that your car doesn’t have a chance of getting cold. The heater still blows hot air when you start the car. People where go and gamble where they have a good gambling experience, have a little pleasure for their hard earned gambling fund and get some play for their money. If that is what you’re seeking please at all costs avoid coming to WV casinos especially in the Northern Panhandle. I don’t know much about the casinos in our Southern part of the state but I can’t imagine them being any better. Wv casinos if you do a little research has the lowest payback percentages in the COUNTRY. Yes the country not the area but the country. I can’t overstate that enough. OK enough of my warnings to you, if you still come here to gamble despite warnings from other posters and myself all I can say is hold onto your wallet because the vacuums (slots) at our casinos will such you dry. I did write our lottery commission about our low payback percentages that I’ll post in another post here.

  9. James Jones says:

    Lottery Commission & Commissioner;

    I have to chuckle every time I read a news article where our states casinos are losing money especially Mountaineer and Wheeling Island. Let’s start with the fact they aren’t losing money they are making a profit in the millions they just aren’t making the same or a bigger profit than a comparable time from the past. Nothing more than a fake loss reported in the papers to sound the dire straits of our local casinos to get some legislation changes repealed such as the smoking ban. Mountaineer blames it on competition and the smoking ban Wheeling Island blames it on competition. You and I both know that no company or casino or business for that matter can stay in operation with the losses reported in the papers if they were truly losses. I do agree that our casinos are hurting but it’s little to do with competition from other states. Businesses look for ways to crush their competition not lay down and take a beating, Our casinos lay down and whine in the papers like that’s going to help. People aren’t going to visit our casinos because they feel sorry for them, to the contrary their going to gamble where they have a good gambling experience. No gambler goes to a casino expecting to win they go for the entertainment value for their money. Why would someone go to one of our casinos when they can stay closer to home and gamble with virtually the same or better chance of having a good gambling experience? Why would they invest the time to travel here, put the wear and tear on their vehicle and risk all the pitfalls of traveling when they can stay and gamble closer to home? Maybe I’m rambling a little but please bear with me solutions follow.
    Now let’s speak about my two local casinos and why they are losing “profits”. The casino’s use the excuse every quarter that competition has sprung up in Washington Pa, Pittsburgh Pa and in Canfield Oh as one of the main reasons why their total wager and profits are down. Mountaineer cries foul because of the smoking ban which that and all of the above reasons are legitimately part of the cause of reduced profits. This stuff isn’t rocket science as how to increase profits, it’s easy all you have to do is get more gamblers in the doors gambling right? Well let me explain a good part of the reason why our casinos are losing gamblers and it’s called tight slot machines which we both know is the biggest part of any casinos revenue. People will go where they perceive they can win something or at least have a good experience of entertainment for their gambling dollars. Here’s my point I go to the Mountaineer or Wheeling Island with a $200.00 bankroll for playing the slots. Many of the times I’m not there long enough for my car engine to get cold before I’m tapped out and leaving. Let me add this also I’m not a max better gambler most of my bets are one or two times the max playable lines on a penny machine. Tell me Sir does that sound like fun to you? Less than an hour and down $200. My wife and I live approximately 20 minutes from Mountaineer and 35 minutes from Wheeling Island but yet my wife and I prefer to drive 50 minutes each way to Washington Pa to play at The Meadows. All you have to do is look at my previous statement as to why we go there. Most times we can get at least between four to eight hours and sometimes more of playing time for our bankroll which gives us a good experience and fun for our gambling dollars compared to own our states casinos where if we get an hour we’re lucky. I will admit there were a few times we visited our casinos and had a good experience but that isn’t the norm. Do you see my point as to why gamblers aren’t coming to our casino’s like they used to? To make a point my wife and I are both gold card members at the Meadows which is the third tier player’s card, at Mountaineer and Wheeling Island we don’t even use players cards because we don’t visit them often enough to generate and comps. There’s a big difference in tiers as you know, it takes 25,000 points every six months to maintain a gold card at The Meadows, 1 point takes one dollar in play to earn so we are running at least $25,000 thru the slots in Pa every six months. Yes it’s not all our money but you get the point I’m making you know how point systems work.
    I have read parts of the race track gambling legislation and have surmised that YOU the lottery commission control everything from the payouts percentage to where the money goes, all pointed out very well in the rules. I might ad at this point our machines are not random chance machines they are random to the point of the percentage of payout the state allows at any given time. Yes I’m saying the state controls how much is paid out at any given point in time. The state might not control which machine or who wins but you do control when higher periods of payouts happen. It is obvious all one has to do is watch the ticket cashing machines when the lines are up waiting to cash their ticket the state has allowed the players to win for a short period of time or when a whole bank of machines start hitting or even a majority of the machines start giving bonuses all at the same time again the state has loosened the hold a little bit. Maybe the lottery commission should look at releasing some of the percentage of hold back to the players in the form of better payout percentages from the machines. The casinos should also cut their comp programs and reinvest those saved dollars into the payback to gambler. Most gamblers are there for entertainment and if they happen to win then it makes it all the better. If something isn’t done soon It may come to the point where our casino operators one day will say there isn’t enough profit in Wv Casino’s and pull out. If that were to happen our state would lose a lot of revenue from lost casino jobs and tax revenue from both the employees and casino itself and would ultimately have to raise taxes because we both know our politicians can’t stop spending money they don’t have. I’m telling you as a gambler I hear it every time I go to Mountaineer and Wheeling Island how tight the slots are and how disgusting it is to not have a good visiting experience. If you think I’m wrong the commission should do a little testand send some information gatherers out into the casinos as undercover gamblers and strike up a conversation of how tight the slots are and gather some information. The data you gather just may end with our state making some changes to our casino’s payout percentages which will ultimately bring in gamblers the way it once did when our two northern casino’s were the place to go to gamble. This is a case where holding less will earn you more. You have to outwit your competition not be complacent with what you have which isn’t fixing the problem.
    Last point here’s payout percentages by states casinos that are two hours or less from us. 2015 is the latest I could find for WV.
    For the one-year period from July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2015 the average return on VLT’s was: 89.25% at Mountaineer Park, 90.70% at Mardi Gras, 89.95% at Wheeling Island, 89.71% at Charles Town Races and 91.91% at The Greenbrier.

    For the 12-month period from July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016, the slot payout percentages for Ohio’s casinos and racinos were as follows:
    JACK Cleveland 92.25
    Hollywood Columbus 91.80
    Scioto Downs 91.03
    Hard Rock Rocksino 90.89
    JACK Thistledown 90.49
    Hollywood Mahoning Valley 89.92

    Following is information from the Pennsylvania Gaming Control Board regarding average slot payout percentages for the one-year period from July 1, 2015 through June 30, 2016:

    The Meadows 89.95
    The Rivers 89.73
    Nemacolin 89.48
    Presque Isle 89.52
    Hollywood Casino at Penn National 89.29

    The best payout percentage by state is in neighboring New York. The Empire State, with its nine reporting casinos, pays back 93.75 percent. Resorts World in Queens, New York, pays the highest returns, at 95.05 percent.
    The second state by average is Nevada, at 93.54 percent.
    West Virginia is at the bottom of the list, with an average of 89.12 percent payback.
    1. NEW YORK – 93.75 percent
    2. NEVADA – 93.54 percent
    3. COLORADO – 92.85 percent
    4. MISSISSIPPI – 92.77 percent
    5. FLORIDA – 92.46 percent
    6. DELAWARE – 92.36 percent
    7. **KENTUCKY– 92.06 percent
    8. *CONNECTICUT – 91.77 percent
    9. NEW JERSEY – 91.41 percent
    10. SOUTH DAKOTA – 91.36 percent
    11. ILLINOIS – 91.00 percent
    12. RHODE ISLAND – 90.88 percent
    13. LOUISIANA – 90.74 percent
    14. INDIANA – 90.71 percent
    15. IOWA – 90.69 percent
    16. MAINE – 90.68 percent
    17. MISSOURI – 90.64 percent
    18. OHIO – 90.34 percent
    19. PENNSYLVANIA – 90.16 percent
    20. WEST VIRGINIA – 89.72 percent

    Do a comparison we’re either at the same or behind other casinos our area and if you want to be a winner and not just competitive our casinos need to give people a reason to travel here and a reason to keep our local gamblers gambling here.
    Also when are we going to allow booking bets on sporting events at our casinos in WV? Don’t you, our lottery commission and our states politicians think it’s time to take the profits from our illegal and unregulated bookies and start putting those betting dollars into our tax base? It will also create jobs at our local casinos.
    Thank you for letting me bend your ear but I think it’s time our state start working in partnership with our casino owners to make our state a destination point for gamblers. We have a Republican controlled state which should be a benefit in getting regulations changed or passed.
    Thank You
    James Jones

    Never received any kind of a response from the Lottery Commission. What’s that say about a commission that doesn’t even acknowledge an email from a state gambler. Say’s their a bunch of overpaid idiots to at least not acknowledge receipt of the email.

  10. James Jones says:

    Here’s what most casinos use to control their payback percentages. They want you to think all hits are random from a random number generator but after doing a little research on Server Based Gaming Systems (SBGS) and Server Supported Gaming Systems (SSGS)you’ll see random number generators have little to do with paybacks.

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