This Sunday, the Baltimore Sun ran a bombshell story about Maryland’s booming casino industry saying that, despite politicians’ promises, it has failed to bring in more revenue for local school districts.
It’s a phenomenon I’ve seen across the country where state politicians dedicate mineral, cigarette tax, and gambling revenue toward school funds and then, instead of adding to the existing education funds, as many voters anticipated, spending the tax revenue they would’ve otherwise spent on education plugging other holes in their budget and cutting taxes.
In Baltimore, the city’s school district faces a $129 million shortfall this year despite the fact that a local casino, the Horseshoe Casino, contributed $200 million to the state’s Education Trust Fund. In total, the casino industry has contributed $1.7 billion toward the state’s Education Trust Fund since voters approved the casino gambling seven years ago.
A version of this news article first appeared in the State EdWatch blog.