VLT revenues fold with the bad economy

Tough times are putting the squeeze on Alberta’s take on video lottery terminal revenues.

CALGARY — Tough times are putting the squeeze on Alberta’s take on video lottery terminal revenues.

And Premier Ed Stelmach’s decision to rescind a steep tax hike on booze has stripped the province of 20 per cent of its expected share of alcohol sales in this fiscal year’s first quarter.

The province’s first quarter budget update shows that while slot machines and lottery ticket revenues held to expectations, its VLT revenue fell by nearly 14 per cent, from $616 million to $532 million.

Christine Wronko, spokeswoman for the Alberta Gaming and Liquor Commission, says economic realities have people spending money differently.

Jarod McGowan of Shuckaluck’s Public Ale House says his VLT revenue is down 25 per cent this year.

He says people used to play the machines all day long, and now it’s really only at night.

“They’re obviously tightening up their budgets — they can’t afford it.”

Money raised through gaming goes into the Alberta Lotteries Fund which benefits activities and infrastructure in areas ranging from sports to the arts.

Wronko said it’s possible the $84 million shortfall from forecast could negatively impact those activities.

Just Posted

Shale oil producer seeking long-term river water supply

A company behind what is billed as Canada’s first commercial shale oil… Continue reading

Red Deer’s crisis line workers are busy dealing with multiple emergencies

Callers need everything from mental health counselling to their basic needs met

Pleaded guilty: Ex-Red Deer teacher gets 3 years for sex offences against kids

SASKATOON — A former Saskatoon teacher who admitted to sexual offences involving… Continue reading

Rental market picking up in Red Deer

There are fewer “for rent” signs in Red Deer than there have… Continue reading

Alberta government to partially backstop new $2 billion dollar bitumen upgrader

CALGARY — The Alberta government is providing a $440 million loan guarantee… Continue reading

2-for-1: Total lunar eclipse comes with supermoon bonus

On Sunday night, the moon, Earth and sun lined up to create the eclipse, which was visible throughout North and South America

Backlund scores OT winner for Calgary Flames in 3-2 win over Carolina Hurricanes

Flames 3, Hurricanes 2 (OT) CALGARY — Mikael Backlund scored 15 seconds… Continue reading

Glendening’s two-goal performance leads Red Wings past Oilers 3-2

Red Wings 3, Oilers 2 EDMONTON — Luke Glendening had a pair… Continue reading

New Canada Food Guide nixes portion sizes, promotes plant-based proteins

OTTAWA — The Canada Food Guide’s familiar food rainbow has been replaced… Continue reading

New Canada Food Guide nixes portion sizes, promotes plant-based proteins

Guide no longer lists milk and dairy products as a distinct food group

B.C. animators land Oscar nominations

‘Animal Behaviour’ by Vancouver’s David Fine and Alison Snowden among several Canadians on the short list

Canadian talent abound on newly revamped Vancouver Whitecaps squad

VANCOUVER — The Vancouver Whitecaps may need to stock up on maple… Continue reading

China demands US drop Huawei extradition request with Canada

China detained two Canadians on Dec. 10 in an apparent attempt to pressure Canada to release Meng

Most Read