LIGHT report: A.C. casinos contributed $682M in taxes, supported 22K jobs in 2023

Despite market challenges, the Atlantic City casino industry remains a force in the region for jobs and support for the region’s neediest, according to the 2023 Impact Report released by the Lloyd D. Levenson Institute of Gaming, Hospitality and Tourism in collaboration with the Casino Association of New Jersey.

According to the report, operators contributed $681.95 million in total casino taxes and fees for the calendar year.

Casino operators paid for municipal services like water and sewer, operations permits like mercantile licenses, and contributed to parking and hotel room fees. This activity, just a sample of taxes and fees paid by casino operators, when combined with the gross gaming taxes, resulted in the $681.95 million total.

In addition, the industry contributed a record $504 million to the Casino Revenue Fund, which supports some of New Jersey’s most vulnerable residents by financing services for New Jersey’s senior citizens and persons with disabilities.

Jane Bokunewicz, the faculty director of LIGHT at Stockton University, said the report is a testament to the industry.

“Despite its triumphs and challenges, Atlantic City continues to persevere,” she said. “The casino industry remains the economic engine of not only South Jersey, but the entire state of New Jersey.

“The industry has paid significant dividends to the city and state over the past five decades and will continue to play a vital role in the long-term success of the region.”

Mark Giannantonio, president of the Casino Association of New Jersey, agreed.

“As one of the largest employers in southern New Jersey, we know that when our properties are successful, so are our employees and the communities we serve,” he said. “This new report from the LIGHT at Stockton University is meaningful because it helps shed light on how the revenue the casino industry generates is dedicated to supporting some of New Jersey’s most vulnerable citizens. It also shows our support for vendors from all corners of the state and the investments we are making to continue Atlantic City’s transformation.”

The Atlantic City casino industry still has not recovered from reductions in business since the COVID-19 pandemic, with casino wins generated from patrons at six of the nine Atlantic City properties year-to-date still lagging those from pre-pandemic periods. The industry also has faced numerous additional challenges in that same period, including increases in regional gaming competition, operating expenses, inflation, labor costs and labor shortages.

Despite these challenges, the casino industry has continued to make significant capital investments and remained a strong community partner. In addition, growth in online gaming revenue, which is taxed at a higher rate than brick-and-mortar gaming revenue, led the industry to record-high total gaming tax contributions for the year.

Other highlights of the report include:

  • In 2023, Atlantic City’s gaming operators generated $467 million just in gross gaming tax revenue, a nearly 12% increase from the industry’s last peak for that metric of $417.5 million in 2006 — before the launch of online and sports wagering;
  • Operators spent $258 million in capital improvements, the highest single-year reinvestment in the city since 2008, bolstering tax revenue and creating good-paying jobs;
  • The industry is one of the largest employers in southern New Jersey, with 22,634 employees.
  • Atlantic City welcomed approximately 17.8 million people in 2023, a 2% increase over 2022, but still down from pre-pandemic levels in 2019;
  • The casino industry is a strong community partner, donating millions of dollars to local, county and statewide organizations like the Community FoodBank of New Jersey and the Boys and Girls Club of Atlantic City.