Page 4 - Mississippi/Louisiana Gaming News - Winter, 2022
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Guest Editorial
    MEC: Gaming industry’s impact is in the numbers
 Official Newsmagazine of the Mississippi Gaming Industry
WINTER 2022 Volume XIX Issue 4
W. Michael Sunderman
Lori Beth Susman
General Manager / Executive Editor
Mary Sunderman
Associate Publisher
David Grisham
Contributing Editor
Amy Chataginer
Business Manager
Brian Treadaway
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Copyright, 2022
Mississippi Gaming News
(MGN) is owned and published by M2 Media Corp., 12268 Intraplex Parkway, Gulfport, MS 39503. MGN is produced in cooperation with the Mississippi Gaming and Hospitality Association. The contents of MGN are copyrighted. All rights are reserved. Reproduction in part or whole without written permission of the publisher is strictly prohibited.
 By Scott Waller
Mississippi’s free-market approach to gaming continues to pay big dividends to the state in various ways, and one of the best ways to describe this vital sector in Mississippi’s economy is resilience.
The industry is maintaining the tremendous gains that
took place in late 2020 and throughout 2021.
The initial
stages of
were difficult
for gaming.
Resorts across
the state could
not operate in a manner that fully utilized all the services and amenities that are so important for success. However,
the industry’s resiliency is continuing
to strengthen. Gaming remains an economic driver, providing long-term meaningful careers and substantial
tax revenue. It also boosts tourism by attracting visitors from across the U.S. and internationally.
The proof of the industry’s impact is
in the numbers. In fiscal year 2022, which ended on June 30, 2022, gaming contributed $310.8 million in tax revenues, which is almost $30 million more than in fiscal year 2021.
To fully understand the significance of this, it is important to look back and compare this to tax revenue collected pre-COVID-19. For fiscal year 2019, which ended eight months before
the pandemic, only $260.2 million was collected. It was approximately $50 million less than was collected in FY2022.
Another indicator of what’s taking place is the monthly adjusted gross gaming revenue. Through the first eight months of 2022, casinos reported $1.74 billion in adjusted gross revenue, compared to $1.81 billion during
the same time frame last year. Yet,
Mississippi’s gaming industry is much more than casinos. Our world-class resorts feature exceptional hotels, fantastic restaurants, and incredible entertainment. In addition, the continued investment that companies are making into properties here in Mississippi shows the industry’s commitment to our state.
This commitment is helping secure Mississippi’s future. This is why the partnership the Mississippi Economic Council (MEC), the State Chamber of Commerce, has with the gaming industry is vitally important.
In February, the MEC released “Securing Mississippi’s Future: Vision for Economic Growth.” This report outlines critical goals to help us move the state forward and is available at One of the most important objectives, which directly impacts the gaming industry,
is to improve workforce development. Having a qualified and skilled workforce is essential for success.
In the wake of COVID-19, numerous programs are being implemented to address this priority. Today, through Mississippi’s Office of Workforce Development, known as Accelerate Mississippi, partnerships are being created between the public and private sectors to determine needs and focus on long-term solutions for building a strong workforce.
For this to succeed, it will require
a coordinated effort. As we move forward, the MEC will continue to work with state leaders to address skills training, educational attainment, and focus on ways to retain and attract young professionals in all sectors of the economy. The gaming industry can play a vital role in this process.
The MEC appreciates the tremendous support it receives from the gaming industry and looks forward to strengthening our partnership. Let’s find ways to continue working together to grow opportunities in Mississippi.
Scott Waller is president and CEO of the Mississippi Economic Council—The State Chamber of Commerce. He can be reached at
 Scott Waller

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