imited Video Lottery's strong performance in September helped offset an ongoing downturn at West Virginia casinos, Lottery Commissioners were advised Tuesday, when they also set minimum bid amounts and dates for the first two rounds of bids for 10-year Limited Video Lottery retail licenses.
The state lottery grossed $91.3 million last month, up slightly from $91.15 million in September 2019, the Charleston Gazette-Mail reports. Limited Video Lottery (LVL), available at 1,202 bars, clubs and fraternal organizations around the state, continued to keep lottery revenues on track in September, with gross revenue of $36.82 million, up 16.7% over September 2019 revenue of $31.55 million.
That helped offset an ongoing revenue downturn at the state’s four racetrack casinos, which continue to operate on limited hours and with restricted capacity. Racetrack video lottery took in $32.84 million in September, down 19% from $40.53 million in September 2019. Table games raked in $1.97 million, down 40% from $3.29 million from the same month of the prior year.
Year-to-date, racetrack video lottery has grossed $99.8 million, down 21% from $126.23 million at the same point in the 2019-20 budget year. Table games year-to-date collections of $5.82 million are down 34% from $8.81 million at the same point in 2019. Conversely, year-to-date LVL revenues of $114.89 million are up 17% from $97.93 million at the same point in the 2019-20 budget year.
LVL play hit revenue records in June and July. Those months followed a six-week shutdown of the machines, as well as the bars and clubs where they are located, during Gov. Jim Justice’s stay-at-home executive order. Sales of traditional scratch-off and online tickets were also up in September, totaling $18.51 million, up 29% from September 2019. Year-to-date sales of $55.1 million are up 20% from $45.8 million at the same point in 2019.
Meanwhile, the casino at The Greenbrier resort had an off-month in September after outperforming racetrack casinos from June through August. Gross September revenue at The Greenbrier casino of $550,000 was down 27% from $681,000 in September 2019. However, year-to-date revenue of $2.26 million is up 30% from $1.74 million at the same point last year.
For September, the state’s share of Lottery profits totaled $41.34 million, up slightly from $41.11 million in September 2019. Year-to-date, the state’s share of Lottery profits is $123.25 million, down $2.88 million from the same point in 2019.
In addition, on Tuesday commissioners set minimum bid amounts and dates for the first two rounds of bids for 10-year Limited Video Lottery retail licenses. Those licenses will be in effect from July 1, 2021, to June 30, 2031.
The minimum bid for each LVL machine license will be $7,500 in the first round of bidding, which opens this Nov. 13 and closes on Jan. 21, 2021, with bid openings on Jan. 22, 2021. A total of 7,800 licenses will be available during the first round of bidding.
A second round of bidding will begin March 12, 2021, and will close on May 20, 2021, with a minimum bid of $8,500 on all remaining unclaimed licenses. Bid opening for the second round will be May 21, 2021.
Under legislation passed during the 2020 regular session, current LVL licensees can effectively renew their retail licenses for the next 10 years by matching the minimum bid amount for each license.
Currently, a total of 7,467 LVL machines are operating statewide.