OXFORD — The town of Oxford has received $1,905,894 million in revenues from the tables games and slot operations at the Oxford Casino during 2018.

The amount is $180,156 more than the town received in 2017.

According to numbers released recently by the Maine Gambling Control Board, the town’s 2 percent of the net slot and table game revenues for 2018 show a return of  $1,554, 698  in slot operations and $3,51196  in table games for a total of  $1,905,894.

In 2017 the town received $1,725,737 as the Casino’s host municipality including  $1,374,455  in slot operations and $351,282 in table games.

There are no restrictions on how the host community – Oxford – may spend the money.

“The money goes into a general revenue account and is used to offset expenses such as the town’s monthly payment to RSU 17, fuel costs, payroll, and health insurance etc.,” said Town Manager Butch Asselin. “Proceeds received from the casino is treated similarly to other revenues the town receives such as excise tax, plumbing permits, real estate taxes and boat registrations.”

In the past, local officials have relied on the Casino money as a way to reduce the tax burden on property owners. The funds have also been used to pay for service provided to the community such as police, fire, town office and the transfer station.

The money for both the town and county reflect the 968 slot machines and the 28 table games that were in play at the height of activity during 2018.

County gains

During 2018, Oxford County received a combined $953,147, or 1 percent as the host county, from the table games and slot operations at the Oxford Casino. Specifically, the county received $777,349 in slot games and $175,798 in table game activity.

During 2017, Oxford County received a combined $862,869, or 1 percent as the host county, from slot operations and the table games at the Oxford Casino. Specifically, the County received $687,227  in slot games and $175,641 in table game operations.

The amount is an increase of about $90,278 over Casino funds received an 2017.

The county has traditionally used the majority of its money for tax relief and some for vehicle replacement.

Allocations

Combined, the town of Oxford and Oxford County received $2,859,041 in financial benefits for hosting the Oxford Casino.

The town and county’s respective 2 and 1 percent annual net slot and table  game revenue return from the Oxford Casino is based on a “cascade of revenues” formula established by the referendum that set up the Oxford Casino in 2010.

According to that referendum that voters approved to allow the expansion of gambling in Maine, 46 percent of net slot machine income and 16 percent of net table game income goes to the state through the Maine Gambling Control Board.

Those board members then return a pre-determined percentage of table game and slot operations to a variety of entities such as the town, county, Department of Education, agricultural fairs, etc. The Bangor Casino has a similar setup.

In addition to the money earmarked to the host town and county, specifically a total of 25 percent of the slot machine revenues and 10 percent of the table games from the Oxford Casino goes to the Department of Education for kindergarten through grade 12 public schools.

Other slot machine revenue is divvied up in various way including 1 percent for agricultural fairs, 3 percent for Maine Community College scholarships, 4 percent to the tribal governments of the Penobscot and Passamaquoddy tribes, and so forth as the revenue “cascades” across agencies and others designated to receive funds through the legislation.

2019 gains

Revenues are already adding up as the new year 2019 gets underway, according to information from the Maine Gambling Control Board records.

As of January 15, the host town of Oxford has garnered $53,217 in slot activity and $13,658 in table game activity.

As of January 15 Oxford County has accrued $26,608 from slot activity and $6,829 in tables.

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