Would building new casinos feed the state’s coffers, or is it too risky a gambit?
(page 4 of 5)
Does it All Add Up?
Critics—mostly the three current racino operators—claim TMG made several erroneous assumptions in its reporting. Fasy and Sutor point to the study’s projection of a 38-plus percent hike in bettors coming into the state with the two additional venues.
“We estimate that 20 percent of adults visit our racinos,” says Fasy. “The study claims that penetration rate will almost double. How?”
“The consultants also claimed the number of trips to Delaware casinos will double from six to 12,” Sutor says. “Why?”
Both agree that Delaware and surrounding states are convenience states when it comes to gaming.
“If there’s a 7-Eleven blocks away from your home and a Wawa five miles away, which one are you going to drive to for that gallon of milk?” asks Fasy.
He points to a once-strong market visiting Delaware Park from the York and Lancaster, Pennsylvania, areas. Between the hike in gas prices and casinos opening in Pennsylvania, he believes those customers have been lost forever.
“There was a poll that showed 80 percent of respondents claimed they’d like to drive one hour or less to a gaming site,” Sutor says. Fasy estimates that his visitors travel from two hours or less away from Delaware Park.
Because of the convenience factor, both see competition from outside the state as siphoning off current customers and directing them to closer venues in their home states instead of driving farther to two new venues in Delaware.
Page 5: Is it Worth it?