SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WWLP) - The Massachusetts State Lottery made close to $1 billion in profits this past year. 22News discovered how casinos in the Commonwealth will impact their bottom line.
The money the state lottery makes goes back into our cities and towns, but in three years, the lottery system and the businesses selling their tickets will have some brand new competition.
The Massachusetts lottery made $983 million in profits this fiscal year. That money goes back to Massachusetts cities and towns for roads, public safety and other services. With three casinos and a slots parlor on the horizon, lottery sales will likely go down.
"If someone comes in here with $20 in scratch tickets, they're not going to come here, they're going to spend those $20 on the slot machines," said David Glantz, co-owner Buckeye Bros. Smokeshop.
The Massachusetts lottery understands that any casino is going to impact their lottery sales, but they believe the money and jobs that casinos bring in will offset any significant changes to the funding cities and towns already receive.
Massachusetts State Lottery communications director Beth Bresnahan sent 22News a statement, in part it reads, there is a myriad of research on impacts casinos have had on lottery sales in other states, but it's not likely going to be reflective of what may happen here, as the Massachusetts Lottery is far more established and the level of success exceeds that of other state lotteries that have faced competition from incoming casinos.
Glantz, whose store is on Main Street in Springfield's South End, near MGM's proposal, believes he could lose about half his lottery sales. "Like me being in close proximity to the casino its going to probably devastate my lottery business."
Since Pennsylvania first opened casinos in 2006, lottery sales initially went down by about 4 percent in the counties where the casinos were located, but went up in every county that didn't have one. In recent years, lottery sales have rebounded and have shown growth across the state .