In tribute to Dolly Parton’s 1972 release “Second Best,” April still loves Nebraska even though it’s only second best. After a record March for the state in terms of taxes on casino games at Nebraska’s two operational “racinos,” April did everything it could.
The state collected almost $1.4 million for the month off poker, slots, and table games.
The April numbers also represent a new milestone for Grand Island Casino & Resort that signals Nebraska’s gambling industry could be maturing somewhat.
April’s gambling tax revenue surpasses all but one month in Nebraska
March saw Nebraska collect around $1.5 million in tax revenue from the two racinos (racetracks that also offer casino gaming) that are active in the state. That was the highest total in that regard for any single month in Nebraska history.
April fell short of that high by over 6% but it was no slouch according to the April report by the Nebraska Racing & Gaming Commission.
The total of $1,393,186.02 in tax revenue from Grand Island Casino & Resort and Warhorse Gaming Lincoln is the second-highest total the state has yet seen. Casino gaming began in Nebraska with Warhorse in September 2022. Grand Island started casino gaming in December.
April proved to be at worst the fourth-best month for each racino individually as well. For Grand Island, it could represent the beginning of a trend the casino operator hopes will develop. From a broader perspective, Nebraska may be showing its worth.
Grand Island pays out over half a million in consecutive months
Grand Island might currently be second-best compared to Warhorse for contributing tax revenue. That gap seems to be shrinking, though.
April and March represented the first months that Nebraska received at least half a million dollars from gaming at Grand Island Casino & Resort. April’s tax contribution at that racino was just about 8.1% lower than March’s record. Conversely, Warhorse saw an 11.3% drop month-over-month.
The biggest takeaway from recent numbers at both racinos is that they seem to be developing some consistency. From February to March to April, neither saw a deviation of more than 19% either negatively or positively. That’s the most consistent gaming taxes that have been in the state for over three months.
At the same time, the statewide tax haul could soon grow due to a new addition in Nebraska. The temporary casino at Ag Park in Columbus plans to start welcoming guests on June 12. Thus, from June on, Nebraska’s gaming tax coffers should see an increase.
If May’s total hovers around the $1.3 million to $1.5 million range and Grand Island contributes another half a million of that sum in May, Nebraskans might be able to start making some solid projections about how much tax revenue they can depend on from Grand Island and Warhorse.
Naturally, though, an unplanned increase would be welcome for the services these tax funds support.