ShareThis Page
Trib editorial: Gambling gold in Westmoreland County no sure bet |

Trib editorial: Gambling gold in Westmoreland County no sure bet

Rich Cholodofsky
| Tuesday, November 14, 2017 10:12 a.m
Wikimedia Commons
Andrew Russell | Trib Total Media

The possibility that one of 10 additional mini-casinos could end up in Westmoreland County has public officials envisioning a substantial payoff. But as with any form of gambling, not everybody wins.

Under the law that allows for up to 750 slot machines and no more than 40 table games at these “satellites,” Greensburg, Latrobe and other locales would meet the stipulation that any new facilities cannot be within 25 miles of existing casinos. And while Washington County and its municipalities have pocketed more than $148 million in tax revenue since the Meadows opened there in 2007, any satellite casino would be smaller.

But gambling’s goose may be running out of golden eggs in Pennsylvania. A report by credit-rating agency Moody’s shows that any additional gambling sites, given the state’s 12 existing casinos, may not see quite the windfall that’s imagined.

Gaming demand has been fairly sluggish nationwide, with Pennsylvania seeing “relatively flat to 1 to 2 percent revenue growth,” says analyst Peggy Holloway. And the state’s “take” — a more-than-50-percent tax on the new iGaming industry — may be a disincentive to new business, which can find lower taxes elsewhere.

Never mind the effect on poor countians lured by local gambling.

Westmoreland communities that prefer not to roll the dice on casinos have until the end of December to notify the state gaming board. At the very least, residents’ input should be considered before county and local officials opt to go all in.

Rich Cholodofsky is a Tribune-Review staff reporter. You can contact Rich at 724-830-6293, or via Twitter .

Categories: Editorials | Westmoreland
TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.