Revenues are up in Langley casinos, and that means an extra $1 million last year for municipal coffers.
The BC Lottery Corporation allocates 10 per cent of net gambling revenues from the Cascades Casino to the City, which last year amounted to almost $7.6 million. The City spends the money on infrastructure projects, including the replacement of a bridge deck on 200th Street over the Nicomekl River, and the expansion of the Penzer Youth Action Park.
Before 2017, Cascades typically transferred between $1.6 million and a little over $1.8 million per quarter to Langley City.
In the 2015/16 fiscal year, that means approximately $6.6 million was transferred to Langley City.
But starting in the second quarter of the 2017/18 fiscal year, revenue jumped, and it has stayed above $1.9 million each quarter since then for which records are available, according to BCLC documents.
The additional money will be put in Langley City’s capital works reserve, said deputy mayor Gayle Martin.
“I think anything extra is great, and an extra $1 million is nice to have,” Martin said.
With a new council just elected, it’s uncertain if there are any new projects that could benefit from the increased revenue. The council is holding a “blue sky” session on Wednesday.
Over the past year, the casino has made a number of upgrades and changes, some of which might account for the increase in revenue.
According to a BCLC spokesperson, 50 more slot machines were added to the casino in January this year, although the revenue increase appears to pre-date that.
Bingo formerly in the Playtime Gaming bingo hall, was folded into Cascades operations in February.
So far in 2018, the casino has also had a 28 per cent “refresh rate” on changing the slot machines or their software, according to the BCLC.
In addition, the casino has renovated its convention space, shut down its theatre space, and expanded its Match restaurant patio.