As Louisiana’s casinos began the process of reopening this week, the American Gaming Association (AGA) shared its latest body of research dedicated to the Pelican State’s gaming sector in the shape of the Casinos & Communities: Louisiana report.

The study, completed prior to the COVID-19 outbreak, shows how critical casino gaming is to Louisiana’s economy, and consequently, how important gaming will be to the state’s economic return. 

The headline findings from the AGA report show that annually, Louisiana’s 25 commercial and tribal casinos have a $6.1bn economic impact on the state, generating $1.5bn in state and local taxes. They also support $1.7bn in wages along with nearly 41,000 jobs.

The AGA estimates that a two-month shutdown of the Louisiana gaming industry would result in a loss of more than $1bn in economic activity to the state.

The report also features firsthand accounts of gaming’s impact on Louisiana’s communities, including in New Orleans, where gaming has added thousands of good jobs, supported local charities, driven tourism, and grown surrounding small businesses. Additionally, it highlights the gaming industry’s leading role in helping Louisianans recover from past crises like Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

Driving home the value of gaming to the local economy was Ronnie Johns, Louisiana State Senator. Quoted in the report, he said: “In all, it’s about a billion dollars a year of taxes that’s coming from the gaming industry, and that does not include sales tax, by the way. That money is just vital to our state budget.”