Gambling Study Says Not Big Money For State

by Steve MacDonald

Maggie Hassan Rolls the Dice on Imaginary Gambling Revenu

Maggie Hassan Rolls the Dice on Imaginary Gambling Revenue

The Union Leader is reporting on a much anticipated study about the future of gambling Revenue for New Hampshire.

The news is not good for proponents.

According to the study done by the New Hampshire Center for Public Policy Studies (NHCPPS), because of the social costs of gambling, the state would not receive a net benefit if the gambling income is taxed at 30 percent or less. 

Taxed at 40%, it’s supporters claimed we could see $152 million per year but,  NHCPPS says that number is less than 50 million per year for the $425 million dollar casino in the plan.   Off by 100 million.  Sounds about right.

Even the $45 million assumes a great many things, like the casino will want to operate here with such a high degree of taxation, that it actually draws the kind of consistent bushiness that would result in those kinds of numbers year after year, or that the estimated social costs would not increase.

Another problem is economics.  Gambling is just one of many taxes some people think we can rely on but that fall apart the moment the economy slows.  A time when the same people want to the state to be able to do more.  And you know every estimated dime will already be spent.

For the record, I don’t care if you want to gamble, but it’s never the win-win people think, it only increases the size of government, it never results in lower taxes, it invites more lobbyists in to buy up your legislature, and it comes with real social costs that affect the cost of state and local government.

I hope this news convinces a few more fence sitters that it is just not right for New Hampshire.


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