Delaware Casinos Seek Table Game Tax Relief - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Delaware Casinos Seek Table Game Tax Relief

Posted: 10/20/2017 19:25:00 -04:00 Updated:
Dover Downs Hotel & Casino (Photo: WBOC file) Dover Downs Hotel & Casino (Photo: WBOC file)

DOVER, Del. --- A commission on gaming in is set to recommend Delaware lower its tax rate on table games at the state's three casinos, prioritizing it over other tax rates on slot machines.

The Video Lottery Advisory Committee will recommend Delaware cut the table game tax rate from 29.5 percent to 15 percent, a move that could save casinos millions, according to Ed Sutor, the CEO of Dover Downs Hotel & Casino.

The proposed tax cut, Sutor said, was intended to be a more reasonable request than lowering the 43.5 percent tax on slot machines and it could help casinos' finances and Dover Downs' long-term outlook. The publicly-traded company only posted a net profit of $32,000 for the second quarter of 2017 and posted a loss in the first quarter.

"We can't sustain ourselves losing money," he said.

Delaware Gov. John Carney said he is interested in trying to find some sort of tax relief for casinos, though he noted it was too early to begin talking about specific proposals before the state's fiscal picture formed for the next year.

Carney said something needs to be done because losing any of the businesses would also take a chunk of Delaware's gambling revenue out of state coffers.

"It is really hard, because it probably means changing the formula in some kind of way that benefits them to the detriment [of the state], to a certain extent," he said.

State Rep. Sean Lynn (D-Dover) said something should be done to try and lower taxes for the casinos and pointed to the fact that Dover's budget is partially underwritten by Dover Downs' utility payments.

"If one of our biggest electric customers go out of business, the City of Dover is going to have to make up those dollars in its general fund, somehow," he said.

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