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Study: Casino Boom In Northeast Could Create Gaming Glut

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(Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

(Photo by Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images)

BOSTON (CBS) – Too many casinos, not enough people.

That’s the take of a study by the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, showing more casinos have opened in the Northeast over the past decade than in any other part of the country, the Wall Street Journal reports.

Twenty-six casinos have opened since 2004, generating a 39-percent increase in total annual gambling revenue in the Mid-Atlantic and New England.

In the 1990s, Atlantic City, N.J., had an East Coast monopoly. There are now 24 casinos within 100 miles of Philadelphia with at least a dozen more gambling locations on the way from Massachusetts to Maryland, the Journal reports.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Mark Katic reports

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Boston College adjunct associate professor and casino expert the Rev. Richard McGowan told the Journal the casino-building boom is “a declaration of war – indirect war – by the states.” McGowan said the states are saying: “I want the revenue back.”

Rhode Island and Connecticut are bracing for a hit when casinos open in Massachusetts where a slot parlor operated by Penn National Gaming will open in Plainville, 12 miles from Rhode Island’s biggest casino, the Journal reported.

A recent Fitch Ratings report said the Northeast market “is reaching a saturation point.” Analysts Indiana and Mississippi are experiencing a similar situation on smaller scales, the Journal reported.

Three resort-style casino licenses have been approved in Massachusetts with a battle underway for a coveted license in the Boston area, the last big Northeastern city without a nearby casino.

“It kind of was the last frontier of a market without commercial gaming” in the region, Mitchell Etess, chief executive of the Mohegan Tribal Gaming Authority told the Journal. Mohegan is competing for rights to build a $1.3 billion casino in Revere.

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