Two new reports on the potential for new casino gambling in Iowa say the state is approaching its betting limit. The report from G.V. Marquette Associates says their analysis finds that most of Iowa is approaching an “equilibrium” situation, where the supply of gaming Approximately matches up with maximum demand from the population.
The report says while several individual casino projects may be financially feasible, most of the casino development alternatives considered would create only a modest amount of new gaming demand in Iowa, and would in turn take away from the existing casinos. The only exception is the proposed casino in far northwest Iowa’s Lyon County.
The report says a Lyon County casino could capture a large amount of out-of-state gamblers due to its proximity to the Sioux Falls, South Dakota and the lack of nearby casino facilities to that city. The other study by the Innovation Group found some similar results, although it used different methods to look at the casinos.
That study found the Lyon County facility shows the most promise. The Innovation group found the Wild Rose in Emmetsburg would be hit the hardest in lost business if new casinos were approved with projected revenue losses of 20 to 27% of its business. It says Terrible’s Lakeside Casino in Osceola would also be significantly impacted, mainly due to the proposed Wapello County facility –with an estimated loss of gaming revenue from 15 to 20%.
The two groups will present their reports to the Racing and Gaming Commission at their June meeting. The commission has said it would wait to review the studies before determining if it would grant any new gambling licenses. Wapello, Webster, Franklin, Tama and Lyon counties have approved referendums and hope to be granted a license to open a casino.
See both gambling studies here .