Posts tagged nevada

Cal-Neva Confidential

In the 1930s, North Shore Lake Tahoe’s Cal-Neva Lodge, owned by James McKay and William Graham, was notorious for reportedly hosting gangsters like Baby Face Nelson and Pretty Boy Floyd.

Learn more about the Cal-Neva, which was later owned by Frank Sinatra, in Roll the Bones: The History of Gambling

Go here to read an excerpt from the book, or learn where to buy your copy.

Bad Debts in Las Vegas

For years, Nevada casinos could not legally collect debts from gamblers they’d extended credit (or, in the industry parlance, given markers) to. That changed in 1983, when the state legislature amended the law to allow casinos to prosecute deadbeat marker-takers for writing bad checks.

That’s one of the interesting facts about the changing legal face of Nevada gambling you’ll learn  in Roll the Bones: The History of Gambling

Go here to read an excerpt from the book, or learn where to buy your copy.

Today in history–March 19, 1931

It’s one of the big ones: on March 19, 1931, Nevada governor Fred Balzar signed Assembly Bill 98 into law. That’s the measure that made it legal (once more) for Nevada gambling halls to offer commercial gambling (games line faro, craps, blackjack, and slot machines) to the public. With a stroke of the pen, Nevada’s gaming industry was born.

You can learn much more about the growth of gaming in Nevada in Roll the Bones: The History of Gambling

Go here to read an excerpt from the book, or learn where to buy your copy.

Reno’s Big Fight

The first major event held in Reno after the March 1931 legalization of commercial gambling was the Max Baer-Paolino Uzcudun heavyweight boxing match held on July 4, 1931.

You can learn more about the origins of Reno gambling in Roll the Bones: The History of Gambling

Go here to read an excerpt from the book, or learn where to buy your copy.

Nevada’s first governor on gambling

Nevada’s first governor, Henry Bladsel, wasn’t a fan of gambling. He called it “an intolerable and inexcusable vice” after taking office in 1864, and he convinced the legislature to strengthen penalties against gambling.

That didn’t stop Nevadans from gambling, and in 1869 the legislature passed a law legalizing gambling. Over Bladsel’s veto. The rest is quite literally history.

You can read the entire story of Nevada gambling in Roll the Bones: The History of Gambling

Go here to read an excerpt from the book, or learn where to buy your copy.

Poker’s Perilous Perch in Vegas Seven

In this week’s Green Felt Journal, I take a look at where poker stands in September 2012. On one hand, live poker’s been on the decline for a few years. On the other, online poker is, some feel, going to transform the state’s economy. Here’s where we are:

Nevada poker is in an odd place. On one hand, poker room revenues have declined by 21 percent since 2007, and several casinos have downsized or closed their poker rooms, including the Tropicana on Sept. 11 . On the other hand, some are counting on online poker to revitalize Nevada’s gaming industry. As summer slides into fall and we get ready for online poker to go live next month, where is poker in the Silver State heading?

via Poker’s Perilous Perch | Vegas Seven

.I have a feeling that this is a column that, a few years from now, I’ll look back on and say, “If only you knew….”

In other words, I have a feeling that things are going to be changing in a big way, and it’s difficult to see exactly how the chips are going to fall.

Looking beyond baccarat in the Las Vegas Business Press

I’ve got a new column in the Las Vegas Business Press today, about the possibly diminishing impact of baccarat:

With the recent release by the Gaming Control Board of the December 2011 Gaming Revenue Report, we can understand what happened to Nevadas gaming industry in 2011, and where the state is headed in 2012.Overall, it wasnt a bad year for the state: Total gaming revenue increased by nearly 3 percent. That hardly matches the boom years of the 1990s, but its the second straight year of revenue gains. As has been the case in recent years, the Strip powered most of the gain, with an overall increase of more than five percent. With visitation rising to near-record levels, this signals that the recession in Las Vegas tourism is over.

via Las Vegas Business Press :: David G. Schwartz : Looking beyond baccarat will serve Nevada best.

The 2011 numbers had some interesting paradoxes, and I think that the fluctuating nature of baccarat in the state’s gaming mix is certainly one of them.

Good July might be great news in the LVBP

My column in this week’s Las Vegas Business Press takes a deeper look at July’s Nevada gaming revenue numbers. The more I thought about them, the more I thought that a good month might not be such bad news:

On Sept. 12, the Nevada Gaming Control Board released its July gaming revenue report. In both May and June, large increases in baccarat win on the Strip powered the state to double-digit-percentage revenue increases. July didn’t have that kind of dramatic story, but that doesn’t make it a bad month for Nevada’s gaming industry. That July was a only a good month for Nevada gaming is, in fact, great news for its future.

via Las Vegas Business Press :: David G. Schwartz : July’s good numbers are great news for gaming.

It’s part of the bigger theme for the past few weeks, which, I’m finding, is “lowered expectations.”

The real test will be August–I’m very curious to see how the market turbulence of early August impacted gaming numbers here. Historically there’s not a very strong correlation between the market and gaming revenues, but I think that the bigger uncertainty might have kept a few dollars in pockets, so to speak. We’ll see in a few weeks.

Smoking ban rollback thoughts in LVBP

After talking about the street “performers” on the Strip, I figured I should discuss something totally noncontroversial in this week’s Las Vegas Business Press. So I settled on an article on the recent rollback of the gaming tavern smoking ban:

Back in November 2006, a majority of voters approved the Nevada Indoor Clean Air Act, which banned smoking in restaurants, child care facilities, stores and many other public places while exempting casino floors and bars that don’t serve hot food. Recently, Gov. Brian Sandoval signed Assembly Bill 571, which overturned key portions of that act and will allow smokers to light up again in taverns with food service.

via Las Vegas Business Press :: David G. Schwartz : Smoking ban’s rollback won’t save LV economy.

Since I don’t own a tavern and generally speaking don’t patronize them, I’m not too fired up about this issue. It does, however, shed some light on the byzantine legislative process here in Nevada.

If I were looking to start or move a business here, I might be concerned about how capricious a lot of these legislative changes seem. It appears that the majority of the tavern owners want to allow smoking, so I’m sure they’re happy they’ve got it, but I feel bad for any tavern owners who just invested a lot of money in renovating facilities so they could offer food and smoking at their bar. It seems like the regulatory requirements surrounding gaming are a constantly-moving target around here.

On one hand, I acknowledge that regulations will change to meet changing circumstances. On the other, if you really want to encourage investment, you’ve got to create some stability.

If the economy was still firing on all cylinders this wouldn’t be an issue, and frankly I don’t think it’s going to do much to move the needle in the end, either. There’s just way less money to go around in the local economy, smoking or not.

Gaming Regulations Evolving in Global Gaming Business

I’ve got a pretty lengthy piece of the differing evolution of gaming regulations and transparency in gaming in Nevada, Macau, and Singapore in the latest Global Gaming Business Magazine:

Today, gaming is a truly global industry. Casino gaming, which was once a small-scale business confined to a limited number of jurisdictions, has blossomed into a multibillion-dollar enterprise with numerous competing markets. This not only means that gamblers get their pick of where they want to play; it also means that states, nations and special administrative regions compete with each other by offering regulatory regimes that best suit the growth of casinos.

Nevada, whose current regulatory regime is the longest-lived of the major gaming markets, may have some historical lessons for jurisdictions on the rise, particularly when it comes to the role of transparency in promoting the public—and investor—trust in the gaming industry.

via Gaming Regulations: Evolution and Transparency | Global Gaming Business Magazine.

Can you tell how eager I am for Singapore to start releasing monthly, or at least quarterly, revenue data?

That was a fun piece to write because it made me think about how Nevada, Macau, and Singapore are similar and different. It wouldn’t make sense to impose Nevada’s regulatory system top-down on other jurisdictions, but at 80 years it’s got the longest history of modern regulatory regimes (though Macau has had legal commercial gambling since the 1850s), so there are definitely going to be some lessons there for everyone.