Stateline’s losing streak continues |

Stateline’s losing streak continues

Sally J. Taylor and Brendan Riley

Stateline casino winnings declined $1.4 million in April. Clubs took in $19.6 million, down 6.7 percent compared to April 1997, according to gaming figures released Tuesday by the Nevada Gaming Control Board.

Gaming revenues increased 2.7 percent throughout Nevada with major declines reported in South Lake Tahoe and the downtown Las Vegas area.

“Four out of the last five months have been down,” said board spokesman Russell Guindon said of Stateline.

While slot activity was down, “gaming and table activity was there but the (casino) wins were down,” he said.

Guindon attributed April’s decline to players’ having better luck than the casinos rather than lack of activity.

The amount played on games overall was up 8.3 percent, mostly on roulette and blackjack.

Dollars played at roulette wheels was up 49.5 percent and, at 21 tables, up 11.1 percent.

On the other hand slot activity was down 2.3 percent and activity overall down 1.7 percent.

In the state overall, lucky baccarat players kept Nevada casinos from having a big April – but the clubs still managed to win $653.2 million for a 2.7 percent gain over the same month a year earlier.

A strong win by slot machines was the big factor statewide during April while table games were down, Guindon said.

Slots accounted for $430.2 million of the total – 4.8 percent more than what the machines won in April 1997. Table games were down 1 percent, winning $218 million.

The big loser among table games was baccarat, down 36.1 percent. Craps was down 13.2 percent, blackjack was up 3.2 percent and roulette was up 69.2 percent.

Poker accounted for the $5 million balance of the statewide win by the casinos, down 7.3 percent.

During May, the state collected $32.8 million in percentage fees based upon the April casino win – a 3.5 percent slump that brought the average for the fiscal year to date to 3 percent.

Guindon said it is obvious, with only one month left in the fiscal year, that the state will not meet the 6.8 percent growth estimate for the entire 12-month period that lawmakers assumed last year in approving the state budget.

If the average for the entire year turns out to be about 3 percent, the state will fall $13 million to $14 million short of its $475.3 million estimated taxes from clubs.

Casino-related taxes account for about 35 percent of Nevada’s budget.

In casino wins in other areas of the state:

— Resorts on the Las Vegas Strip accounted for $307.4 million, up 1 percent, while downtown Las Vegas casinos won $56.8 million, down 2.7 percent.

— Laughlin clubs won $42.1 million for a 1.6 percent increase – and the Colorado River town’s first gain in five months.

— North Las Vegas casinos won $15.4 million, up 15.6 percent; Boulder Strip clubs won $39.6 million, up 23.5 percent.

— Casinos in the Reno-Sparks-North Tahoe area won $86.4 million, up 3.3 percent. A breakdown shows Reno up 4.4 percent, Sparks down 1.6 percent and North Tahoe up 4.8 percent.

— Clubs in Elko County won $17 million, up 4.8 percent. That follows a slump in the preceding two months.

— Casinos in Carson City-Gardnerville-Minden won $6.5 million, up 8.1 percent; Churchill County casinos won $1.2 million, up 23 percent; Humboldt County clubs won nearly $1.4 million, down 7.1 percent; and White Pine County casinos won $355,000, down 2.7 percent.

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