Gaming Board Halfway Through Category 4 Auctions

Gaming Board Halfway Through Category 4 Auctions

The state’s Gaming Control Board awarded the fifth license for a Category 4 casino to be located in Lancaster County, maybe.  The municipality identified as the center point is West Cocalico Township, has opted out of hosting a facility, but the casino can go anywhere within a 15 mile radius of that point.

The winning bid was placed by the owners of Penn National, a Category 1 facility in Dauphin County, which bid just $3 over the minimum threshold of $7.5 million.  An article on the winning bid indicates that the owners had an interest in creating a buffer area to protect the Category 1 facility from competitors.

The winning amounts have definitely fallen since the first auction that will place a casino in York County (also won by the owners of Penn National).  That amount was $50.1 million.  Subsequent winning bids for Category 4 casinos in Westmoreland ($40.1 million), Lawrence ($21.8 million), and Cumberland ($8.1 million) have combined to raise $127 million including this week’s winning bid.  If the next five bids come in at the level of this week’s bid it would be expected that another $37.5 million would be raised until the end of the bidding period.

With the existing casinos these five will mean 17 of the state’s 67 counties will host a slot/table game facility.