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2 Ohio casinos see gains in May after revenue drop

Amanda Lee Myers, Associated Press

CINCINNATI (AP) -- Two of Ohio's four casinos bounced back from significant revenue decreases in April and posted gains last month, while the other two continued to see drops in profits, according to a report released Friday by the Ohio Casino Control Commission.

Revenues at the state's newest casino in downtown Cincinnati increased from about $17.8 million in April to just over $19.6 million in May. That's a 10 percent increase, although still down about 6.6 percent from its opening month in March, when it raked in $21 million.

Cleveland's casino gained very slightly in May, with revenues of $20 million, compared with $19.9 million in April. That's still down from $24.5 million in March.

The casinos in Columbus and Toledo continued to see drops in their revenues.

Columbus' revenues fell to $16.7 million in May, a 7.4 percent drop from April and a 20 percent drop from March. In fact, May was the least profitable month at the Columbus casino since it opened in October.

Toledo's revenues fell to $15.8 million in May. That's a nearly 4 percent drop from April's posting of $16.4 million and a more than 11 percent drop from its March revenues of $17.8 million.

But Toledo has seen worse. The casino was drawing under $15 million each month between October and February, with an all-time low of $13.6 million in November.

The four casinos opened within 10 months of each other starting a year ago in Cleveland and Toledo and ending in March with Cincinnati's.

Voters approved the casinos in 2009 after proponents sold it as a way to boost Ohio's economy and add jobs.

Ohio collects 33 percent in taxes from the casinos and distributes them to the state's 88 counties, its school districts and host cities, among others.

In the past year, casinos have drawn almost $688 million in revenues. That amounts to about $227 million in taxes.


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