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State casinos collect record revenue in March

Pittsburgh Post Gazette – Apr 3, 2012

Slot machine revenue at Pennsylvania casinos hit an all-time high in March.

Gross revenue, the amount gamblers lost, hit $233.1 million for the month, the most since slot machine gambling began in November 2006. The previous high was in July 2011, when gross revenue hit $218.3 million.

At $126.5 million, tax revenue for the month also was at its highest since slot machine play began. Most of that money goes toward property tax relief.

March also was good to Pittsburgh’s Rivers Casino, which finished third in the state with $26.7 million in gross slots revenue, up 9.8 percent from last March.

The Meadows Racetrack and Casino in Washington County finished sixth, with $22.8 million in revenue, up 1.7 percent.

Richard McGarvey, a spokesman for the state Gaming Control Board, said one reason slots revenues were so high is that there were five Fridays and Saturdays in March, typically the biggest days of the week for casinos.

"That’s always going to help," he said.

Mark Belko: mbelko@post-gazette.com or 412-263-1262.