Illinois Video Gaming Surpasses Riverboat Casino Revenue

Illinois video gaming revenue has surpassed riverboat casino revenue for the first time in state history.

These findings come from a new report by the Commission on Government Forecasting and Accountability (COGFA).

Their documents show that Illinois collected $296 million from video gaming in the 2017 fiscal year ending on June 30. This is up from the 2016 fiscal year, which produced $252 million in video gaming revenue.

How did Illinois Riverboat Casinos Do?

The Land of Lincoln’s riverboat casino revenue continues to fall. It dropped from $270 million in the 2016 fiscal year to $270 in 2017.

Neither of these totals even equal half of what riverboat casinos generated in 2005, when they produced $699 million in tax revenue. reports that Illinois earned $1.31 billion in overall gaming revenue. This is a 7.9% increase from the 2016 fiscal year.

COGFA Report Notes the Rise of Video Gaming

COGFA Made several observations based on the financial data that they collected.

“The growth in video gaming was the impetus behind the 7.9 percent increase in state revenues from gamingā€related sources in FY 2017,” the COGFA report states.

“But while video gaming has flourished, the established gaming sources in Illinois have seen stagnated sales (Lottery) or declining revenues (riverboat casinos and horse racing).”

Lottery is the Biggest Money Generator

The Illinois State Lottery earned the most money, collecting $738 million in revenue during the 2017 fiscal year. This is an increase of $58 million from the 2016 fiscal year, but down from a record-$815 million in 2014.

The state fired NorthStar from running their lottery after they failed to meet revenue goals. Camelot will take over as the new private manager starting on Jan. 2, 2018.

“A closer look shows that the overall increase in gaming revenues has been, for the most part, experienced downstate where limited gaming opportunities had previously existed,” COGFA’s report states.

“The numbers suggest that adding video gaming to the Chicago areas has merely redistributed the revenues to the numerous gaming venues that now exist in that area.”