Flooding cuts casino rake for city revenues

St. Joseph city leaders are estimating a loss of $120,000 in revenues due to the casino being closed for more than a month due to spring flooding. That will be reflected in budget cuts to some programs and organizations that receive allocations from the city's gaming fund.

Posted: May. 14, 2019 8:33 PM
Updated: May. 15, 2019 9:15 AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.)   You can include the City of St. Joseph among those who have lost at the casino.

Spring flooding that closed St. Joseph's Frontier Casino rocked the boat with the city's budget to an estimated $120,000 in lost revenues.

"With the casino losing revenue because of the flood and closed for a couple months this year, the city gets less revenue to play with from the gaming fund," said councilmember Bryan Myers.

The city's jackpot from gaming is normally about $75,000 per month. Those revenues get put in a special fund to be spent on capital projects, non-profit grants, special projects and other organizations. With less money coming in, cuts had to be made in next year's budget.

"Allied Arts, because they're not going to have Trails West next year, is $30,000 saved. For the next year, Innovation Stockyards will be receiving about $7,000-8,000 less. Looking at the regional council, they're about $10,000 less," Woody said.

The $120,000 lost is just part of $335,000 in cuts the city council made from it's gaming budget expenditures.

"Every dollar we invest in that fund should have a rate of return on it," Myers said. "I look at it like it should be some kind of investment. We looked at the different groups that were available. Some groups were a solid investment historically, some groups were not."

Though some of the cuts could hurt some of the agencies that rely on gaming revenues, Myers said the council had one major focus in completing the 2019-20 fiscal budget.

"Our main objective was to make sure we have a balanced budget. This is the first time we've had a balanced budget for the City of St. Joseph in four years. This is a giant step forward for us in getting our finances in order."

There will be a public hearing on the proposed budget at a future city council meeting.

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