New Budget Increases Funding for Michigan Gaming Control Board

The regulatory body that oversees gaming in Michigan, including online sports betting and retail sports betting, as well as casino activity, will receive a funding boost in the 2022-23 budget.

Lawmakers in Michigan passed their omnibus bill for the 2023 fiscal year last week, and the legislation is awaiting the signature of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who is expected to sign it into law. The bill assigns an increase of $7 million in funding for the Michigan Gaming Control Board. The funding was agreed to on a bipartisan basis.

Last year the MGCB had a budget of approximately $38.5 million, and the increase will bring it to roughly $45.5 million for the fiscal year that runs from October 2022 through the end of September 2023.

Michigan has three commercial land-based casinos within the Detroit city limits, as well as several casinos throughout the state on tribal-controlled lands. Online sports betting has been operational since January of 2021, while retail sportsbooks have been operating since March 2020.

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MGCB Responsibilities are Expanding

In addition to managing the growth of legal casino gaming and sports betting in the state, the MGCB is also now responsible for managing other operations such as the state’s entry into the Multi-State Internet Gaming Association last year.

As part of the Multi-State Internet Gaming Association, Michigan now offers multi-state pools for regulated online poker rooms that operate in the Wolverine State. Pools are shared with players and games operating in Delaware, New Jersey, and Nevada.

Funding for the MGCB is largely paid for by tax revenue from the operators. Both the Detroit casinos and the tribal casinos are mandated by law to pay a portion of their taxes on adjusted gross revenue to a fund for the agency. Much of that funding goes to IT infrastructure, security, and responsible gambling programs.

The MGCB is headed by Executive Director Henry Williams, who began his term on May 17, 2021. The board has five members and meets monthly in public hearings to discuss the operations of the agency. The MGCB’s mission is “to ensure the conduct of fair and honest gaming to protect the interests of the citizens of the State of Michigan.”

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Sports Betting Fuels Michigan Gaming Market

Earlier in 2022, Michigan became one of the few states to surpass $6 billion in total handle from sports wagering. In January, the state had its most successful month based on total handle: $532 million in bets placed on sports.

From January to May of 2022, Michigan has reported $2.18 billion in total handle from sports betting online and at retail sportsbooks. That’s a 57% increase over 2021 when during the same period the state reported $1.39 billion in sports wagers.

With $5.2 million in revenue from sports betting activity in 2022, Michigan has received more than twice the total from the same period last year ($2.5 million in 2021 from January to May).

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Casinos Back to Pre-Pandemic Revenue Numbers

According to then MGCB, the state’s three Detroit casinos, which pay taxes to the city and to the state, reported $108.7 million in monthly aggregate revenue in  May. $106.3 million of that came from table games and slots revenue, and $2.4 million was from retail sports betting.

The market share for May was:

  • MGM Grand: 46%
  • Motor City Casino: 32%
  • Hollywood Casino at Greektown: 22%

AP Photo/Paul Sancya

About the Author

Dan Holmes

Dan Holmes is a writer and contributor for Michigan Sharp. He is an accomplished author, who has written three books about sports. He previously worked for the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Major League Baseball. He isn't far from the Michigan action, residing near Lake Michigan, where he lives with his daughters.