Montana Gambling also suffers from smoking prohibition

Montana joins New Jersey, Colorado, Illinois and other states that saw its gambling revenue fall after the smoking ban. Gaming and casino tax collections dropped 18% in the state of Montana in the final three months of 2009, as a reaction on the implemented smoking ban.

Gambling revenue

Video gambling tax income fell by 17.8%, USD 2.7 million, in the preceding quarter, according to Montana’s head of Gambling Control Division, Rick Ask. That’s 16.8% down in comparison with the same period of the preceding year.

Montana Tavern Association

Mark Staples, lawyer for the Montana Tavern Association, said to the Billings Gazette: “The decline has been navigating between 15% and 20% at the majority of the licensees that have any noteworthy gaming property.

Smoking ban

The Montana Tavern Association representative denied that the economic slump caused the sudden fall in gambling, stating that the slump had hit over a year before the smoking prohibition went into effect, and the timing of the decline corresponds precisely with the implementation of the smoking ban.


Proponents of the Montana smoking laws knew very well that the ban could have economic consequences, but stated that possible second-hand smoke health issues are more important than any contemplation of the economic consequences for the gambling firms, even if it leads to loss of jobs which they want to make healthier.

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