Late-night Gambling In Massachusetts Is Over Due To The Coronavirus Reappearance

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Article by : Helen Nov 18, 2020

Casino fans from Massachusetts will have to adjust their schedules in case the latter contain late-night gambling sessions in land-based casinos. From Friday, November 6, Encore Boston Harbor, MGM Springfield, and Plainridge Park will no longer be accessible overnight. The casinos will remain closed from 9:30 pm to 5:00 am every day. The coronavirus has recently boomed again in the state, which forced the local authorities to take measures against its spreading, and the commercial casinos will suffer from this decision.

The three Massachusetts gambling venues were already forced to close their doors in March due to the increase in the coronavirus cases. So, starting from March to July, the casinos were shut down, resulting in colossal revenue drops. Since July, they have been trying hard to get back to solid ground, but the new pandemic-related restrictions are a big step backward. Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker established the order in response to a 278% increase in the number of coronavirus cases since Labour Day. There is also a 145% surge in hospitalization rate, which puts the healthcare system out on a ledge.

Something had to be done not to let things get out of control one more time, and Charlie Baker decided to act immediately. The governor issued a “stay-at-home” advisory that urges state residents to stop traveling by non-essential occasions between the hours of 10:00 pm and 5:00 am. While the advisory allows people to do grocery shopping, take a walk, go to and return from work, it does not provide an exception for gambling.

In September 2020, the three commercial casinos showed pretty decent operating results considering that they had been operating at around half of their capacity. The total gross gaming revenue (GGR) got over US$70 million, which is almost 87% of GGR reported during the same period last year. Besides the well-coordinated work of the casino operators, this also shows a strong desire of local gamblers to play casino games that had been accumulated during the last shutdown.

Wynn Resorts, a publicly traded corporation that runs Encore Boston Harbor, decided not to waste time and closed its 671-room hotel. The company claims that there won’t be any sense to keep the hotel open without late-night gambling, as there won’t be demand for it. Thus the hotel rooms will remain dark until at least the middle of December. The gambling venue, in turn, will remain open from 9 am to 9 pm on weekends and from noon to 9 pm on weekdays. Unlike Encore Boston Harbor, MGM Springfield is not so straightforward about the property’s operation hours. The casino has been reportedly analyzing the new advisory’s impact and looking for the best options to keep operations as effective as possible.

We are evaluating the impacts on operations. We are in this together and remain committed to the health and safety of our guests, employees, and the overall well-being of the state.

MGM

The Massachusetts director of the National Federation of Independent Business, Christopher Carlozzi, is dissatisfied with Baker’s decision. Carlozzi claims that such a rollback can negatively impact an already fragile economy and make the state unemployment trend in the wrong direction. Anyway, Massachusetts is not the only state that takes measures to prevent the reappearance of the coronavirus. The governor of Illinois has also ordered restaurants, gambling venues, bars, and some other non-essential facilities to reduce their working hours. Thus, starting November 6, all casinos will have to close their doors after 11 pm and reduce their capacity to 25% while being open.

Helen

Chief Editor

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