Mt. Vernon Register-News

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March 28, 2013

City gets video game receipts

The city has received just under $7,000 in tax receipts from video gaming for January and February.

"We now have three businesses which have signed up for video gaming licenses that have been approved by the state," City Finance Director Merle Hollmann said. "We receive the funds from the state a couple months behind. We receive the February receipts in April."

While the city has three establishments — Betty Pate, Pros and the Frosty Mug — which have had video gaming licenses approved by the state, there are still 17 licenses pending for businesses within the city limits.

Hollmann said the city receives 5 percent of the collected 30 percent taxes on licensed gaming receipts. The remaining tax collected is kept by the state.

November was the first month in which the city had an establishment licensed for video gaming, and collected $789.31. In December, two establishments were licensed, with receipts coming in at $4,019.64.

The three establishments which are now licensed in Mt. Vernon are The Hideout, Pros Place and The Frosty Mug.

In January, the Frosty Mug was licensed for five gaming terminals, the maximum allowed by state statute. The amount played in was $326,916; $302,844 in the amount won; and $24,072 in net wagering activity.

The Hideout is licensed for four video gaming terminals, with $285,146 as the amount played in January; $268,508 in the amount won; and $16,639 in the net wagering activity.

Pros is also licensed for four gaming terminals, with $292,528 in amount played in January; $272, 632 as the3 amount won; and $19,896 in net wagering activity.

In February, The Hideout had $304,024 in amount played, $281,928 in amount won, and $22,096 in net wagering activity. Pros had $277,481 in amount played, $257,388 in amount won and $20,093 in net wagering activity. The Frosty Mug had $552,446 in amount played, $516,032 in amount won and $36,414 in net wagering activity.

Hollmann said while preparing the city's budget for the 2013-14 fiscal year, only "very soft" numbers of revenue expectations can be proposed for video gaming receipts.

"The state is really slow in approving the licenses," Hollmann said. "We don't know when or how many licenses will be added during the next fiscal year. We're hoping to use any estimated revenues from video gaming to help offset any sales tax decline."

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