In November 2006, the citizens of Nevada voted to approve the Nevada Clean Indoor Air Act (NCIAA). It took effect in December 2006. Since then, Mesquite Gaming has invested a significant amount of time, expertise and money to provide clean, filtered air to its patrons. Mesquite Gaming fully complies with NCIAA. Restaurants, showrooms, meeting rooms and convention spaces are smoke free. It should be noted that NCIAA does not prohibit smoking in gaming areas.
A complete ban on smoking in the City of Mesquite will have a heavy impact on the casinos in Mesquite.
Mesquite Gaming pays millions of dollars in tax revenue to the City of Mesquite. This income is a major support for the city in the services it provides to its residents such as the Police Department, the Fire Department, parks and recreation areas and city public works including road maintenance and beautification projects.
Mesquite Gaming is the city’s largest employer. Hundreds of employees of Mesquite Gaming contribute to the economic well-being of the city. Many employees live in the city and pay property taxes to the city.
Mesquite Gaming is a strong financial supporter of the local schools, the youth sports teams and city-sponsored events.
To illustrate the impact that such a complete non-smoking ban can have on gaming companies, we can look to the states of Illinois, Indiana, and Colorado. Each of these states has banned smoking in every casino in their state. The state casino regulators in these states have concluded that their casino revenue has since declined as much as 31.9%. That decline would be even greater in Mesquite because, while patrons in those three states had no other places to go, the guests of Mesquite Gaming do have other choices. They can simply choose to vacation at casinos a few miles down the road. They would eat in their restaurants, stay in their hotels, visit their showrooms and move their conventions to other Nevada casino properties.
The revenue loss could easily be at 40% annually for Mesquite Gaming properties. As a direct result, tax revenue for the City of Mesquite would be severely reduced. Sixteen-hundred (1600) employees would have to be let go. People would be forced to move in order to find other employment. Local businesses, schools, and tourism will be negatively impacted.
History comes to mind. In 2008, the Oasis Hotel & Casino, once located in the City of Mesquite, closed. Hundreds of residents lost their jobs. Businesses closed. The housing market fell. The City of Mesquite suffered its greatest economic downturn in two decades.
Mesquite Gaming would have to protect its investments by closing its properties in Mesquite and move them to an area where they could become a viable asset to another community. In reality, every single resident of Mesquite would be impacted by this ban.
CEO, Mesquite Gaming