Philadelphia County Accounts For Most Pennsylvania Problem Gambling Cases

Written By Corey Sharp on January 22, 2024
Image of a map showing Philadelphia for a story about Philadelphia being responsible for the most problem gambling cases within the state last year.

While Pennsylvania is a robust gambling state, Philadelphia might be the epicenter of where the majority of the action happens. The state’s Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs (DDAP) reported that Philadelphia had the most problem gambling calls of any other Pennsylvania county. Those surrounding Philadelphia recorded high intake numbers, too.

Philadelphia is a rich sports city with unwavering fans. It has five professional teams and multiple college programs.

To combat the higher rates of problem gambling, Philadelphia receives the most amount of funds geared toward prevention and treatment.

DDAP report cites Philadelphia with highest number of problem gambling communications

Pennsylvania provided the Compulsive and Problem Gambling Treatment Fund (CPGT) a record $8.3 million in FY 2022/2023. The number of ways to bet is increasing rapidly. The state offers the following mediums:

  • 21 online casinos
  • 13 online sportsbooks
  • 17 retail casinos

Philadelphia is the largest city in the state, so it’s no surprise that it reported the most instances of problem gambling last fiscal year. But even the surrounding counties reported high counts of problem gambling calls. The DDAP Compulsive and Problem Gambling Annual Report shows the number of intakes by county. Here are the top five:

  • Philadelphia: 485
  • Allegheny: 305
  • Montgomery: 124
  • Bucks: 98
  • Delaware: 91

Everyone within the state has access to all online means to gamble. However, Philadelphia and its surrounding counties offer the most retail options, too. Here are the following casinos in Philadelphia, Montgomery, Bucks and Delaware counties:

  • Rivers Casino Philadelphia (Philadelphia)
  • Live! Casino Philadelphia (Philadelphia)
  • Parx Casino Bensalem (Bucks)
  • Valley Forge Casino (Montgomery)
  • Harrah’s Philadelphia (Delaware)

In addition to these locations, residents are now able to place sports wagers at Chickie’s and Pete’s in South Philadelphia after the Commonwealth Court overruled a previous decision made by the Philadelphia Zoning Board of Adjustments.

Philadelphia receives largest share of State Gaming Fund

The State Gaming Fund is distributed to all of the counties for responsible gambling in Pennsylvania. DDAP explains the fund and how resources are given out:

“Act 71 of 2004, the Pennsylvania Racehorse Development and Gaming Act, established the State Gaming Fund to receive gaming license fees and 34 percent of the gross terminal revenue (GTR) generated by licensed gaming facilities. The State Gaming Fund receives 52 percent of gross interactive gaming revenue (GIGR) generated through simulated slot machines and 14 percent of GIGR generated through simulated table games.”

The state allocated $3.1 million to counties in Pennsylvania. Here are the locations receiving the most money, with Philadelphia leading the way:

  • Philadelphia: $495,047
  • Allegheny: $362,849
  • Montgomery: $166,849
  • Delaware: $162,658
  • Chester: $134,829

While Philadelphia is an incredibly rich sports town, Pittsburgh, having three professional sports teams and multiple college programs, shouldn’t go unrecognized, either.

Philadelphia, its surrounding counties and Pittsburgh will likely continue to command the most resources for problem gambling moving forward.

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Corey Sharp

Corey Sharp is the Lead Writer at PlayPennsylvania bringing you comprehensive coverage of sports betting and gambling in Pennsylvania. Corey is a 4-for-4 Philly sports fan and previously worked as a writer and editor for the Philadelphia Inquirer and NBC Sports Philadelphia.

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