BOSTON (State House News Service) – The number of Massachusetts residents employed in the casino gaming industry soared from fewer than 500 to almost 9,000 during 2018 and the new industry paid about $300 million in wages to Bay Staters during the year that the state’s first resort casino opened.
In total, 12,000 people found work due to Massachusetts casino construction or operations in 2018, when MGM Springfield opened and while the $2.6 billion Encore Boston Harbor was being built, according to the Gaming Commission’s 2018 casino industry impact report. “Both the operations and construction phases of the three casinos contributed significantly to the workforce opportunities and economic impacts for Massachusetts residents and business owners, as well as minority, veteran, and woman employees and business owners,” the commission’s workforce point person, Crystal Howard, wrote in a memo outlining the report.
Throughout the year, the growing industry spent more than $1.2 billion with Massachusetts businesses, representing 72 percent of what the industry spent in 2018 on Massachusetts construction and operations, compared with $618 million in 2017. Included in the industry’s total 2018 spend is the $385 million paid in wages, with more than $299 million going to Massachusetts residents.
The state also collected $109.45 million in state taxes and assessments from the slots parlor at Plainridge Park Casino and MGM Springfield during 2018, according to the commission’s revenue reports.