Charities hurt from falling bingo profits
Bingo profits, which contribute millions to charities, plunged by 28 percent statewide between 2006 and 2009, and local counties have all seen significant drops.
Figures submitted to the Ohio Attorney General’s Office show that nonprofit bingo parlors took in $196.7 million in 2006 and $142.2 million in 2009.
“It does affect everything,” said Lisa Buckingham, president of Sightless Children Club, a Vandalia-based group that received more than 90 percent of its reported gross income from bingo in 2006. “It’s the bingo profits that we live off of, really.”
Bingo profits for the group dropped 91 percent from 2006 to 2009, according to records from the Ohio Attorney General’s office.
An analysis done by the Dayton Daily News shows that bingo profits in Montgomery County dropped 27.7 percent, from $9.3 million in 2006 to $6.7 million in 2009.
In Warren County, bingo profits fell 35 percent. In Miami County, the drop was 23.1 percent. In Greene County, it was 19 percent.
Besides the economy, some blame competition with casinos in neighboring states. That situation will not get better after the voter-approved casinos are built in Cleveland, Columbus, Cincinnati and Toledo. People are not going to “come in and play tickets” if there are casinos in every corner of the state, said Don Lanthorn, department service director for the Ohio American Legion.
“There are only so many gambling dollars out there,” he said. “We’re very
Local charities feel the pain when bingo revenue drops. “It’s the bingo profits that we live off of, really,” said Lisa Buckingham, president of Sightless Children Club, a Vandalia-based group.