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Century Casino tax revenue bouncing back after pandemic hit

Cape Girardeau's economy is working its way back from the financial hit of the Covid pandemic and city leaders say look to the Century Casino for proof.
Published: Apr. 7, 2022 at 6:31 PM CDT
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CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - Cape Girardeau’s economy is working its way back from the financial hit of the COVID-19 pandemic.

City leaders say, look no further than the Century Casino downtown for that proof.

Century Casino generates millions of dollars for the city each year.

That dollar amount took a significant hit in 2020, but now, Cape’s finance director tells us the casino’s on track to reach pre-pandemic levels by this summer.

“Our recovery is getting there but it’s been a little slow but it is coming back,” Dustin Ziebold said.

Dustin Ziebold is Cape Girardeau’s Finance Director.

He says the pandemic had an impact on businesses throughout the city, and the Casino was no exception.

Numbers from Ziebold’s office show Century Casino generated more than two-point-seven million dollars in tax revenue from July 2018 to June 2019.

The following year, the pandemic hit and that number dropped to just over two-point-one million; a loss of more than 627-thousand dollars.

Then, it bounced back last year to more than two-point-five million.

“We recovered about 19, 20 percent in 2021 and now we’re up another 9 percent to kind of get back to flat,” Ziebold said.

Ziebold said that casino tax revenue goes directly into city-related projects. One example, a recent overhaul of Cape’s police and fire radio systems.

“It was a very expensive program but it was able to get their radios functioning much better and communicate better and things like that so it’s done great projects like that and we utilize those funds for those types of things,” he said.

Ziebold said Century’s plans to bring a 26-million dollar hotel to this property should generate even more revenue for the city.

The casino’s general manager told us back in February they’ll be laying out more detailed plans for the project in the coming months.

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