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Colorado casinos suffer worst year since 1991

23 January 2009

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colorado -- As reported by The (Colorado Springs) Gazette: "Casinos in Cripple Creek and elsewhere in Colorado saw their revenues decline in 2008 by the worst margin since gaming was legalized in the state in 1991, according to final numbers for the year from the Colorado Division of Gaming.

"Statewide, gaming revenue fell 12.3 percent in 2008 to $715.8 million. Cripple Creek fared better than Black Hawk and Central City, with revenue off 9.6 percent to $140 million. Part of that comparatively good performance is attributable to the opening of the new Wildwood Casino in May, which added 700 slot machines to the city's total.

"There were several causes for the decline: In January, the statewide smoking ban was extended to casinos, then skyrocketing gas prices took a bite and finally the declining economy dug into profits in the fall and winter.

"...Casinos are counting on 2009 being a better year. Colorado voters approved Amendment 50 in November, which allowed the gaming towns to approve higher betting limits, longer hours and new games. Voters in all three towns approved the changes, which take effect July 1..."

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