The two other area applicants are Greenwood Gaming and Entertainment, the owner of
near Philadelphia, and
Penn National Gaming
, which plans to convert its
Maryland regulators expect to select a licensee by the end of 2013. Under
a casino in Prince George's County would not be permitted to open until the earlier of July 2016, or the 30-month anniversary of the mid-2014 opening of
. So even it were awarded the coveted Prince George's County license, MGM would not likely open its doors at National Harbor for another three years.
While casinos in Massachusetts and Maryland would help fill those states' tax coffers with new revenue, the competitive implications of expanded gaming in the eastern U.S. have already been sobering. The ripple effects have been notable in the Washington area.
In June 2012, privately owned Maryland Live! Casino debuted at Arundel Mills Mall, some 30 miles from Capitol Hill. The new casino added table games in April 2013.
In nearby West Virginia, PENN's successful Hollywood Casino at Charles Town Races, 65 miles from the nation's capital, has lost business to its new Maryland rival. According to
state lottery data,
Hollywood Charles Town saw a 12% year-on-year decline in gaming revenues during the 12 months ended June 2013.
An MGM casino-resort at National Harbor, or a new racino at Rosecroft Raceway, would further disrupt the Mid-Atlantic gaming market, which has grown increasingly competitive in recent years.
For its part, PENN would certainly prefer to prevail in its bid for a casino license at Rosecroft, and cannibalize its own West Virginia gaming operation, rather than lose more D.C.-area customers to either an MGM or Parx casino in Maryland's fortuitously situated Prince George's County.
By Brian Egger of BreakingCall.com
At the time of publication, the author did not own any of the stocks mentioned.
This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.