Page 13 - MGHA Annual Report, 2022
P. 13

 We should be ever so thankful to have come through one of the most disruptive years in business that I can recollect. Our 2021 Annual Report offers a thorough review of the Mississippi gaming market and serves as a bellwether to state officials, gaming employees, and the public about the impact our industry has on our state in terms of tax revenues, tourism, and jobs. This comprehensive overview should assist key decision makers with information and statistics that indicate the strength of the gaming market in our state and allow them to partner with our industry as we continue to meet the challenges of an ever-changing economic environment.
Disruptive forces were at work in 2021. Because of the pandemic, we faced challenges we’ve never seen before. Having public officials respond and adapt in such a quick fashion spoke volumes. Surprising many, the gross gaming numbers month-after-month in 2021 were record-breaking. Had it not been for our governor, legislature, and gaming commission working with our industry, we would have not been able to recover as quickly as we have.
Larry Gregory
  We were delighted to successfully conduct our 2021 Southern Gaming
Summit (SGS). Many attendees were pleased to return to a face-to-face event. We took the necessary protocols for safety and concluded with one of the best shows in years. We knew the timing was right to open our doors once again in Mississippi. The next one will be even better, so please, mark your calendar for May 3-6 for our 2022 SGS, which will take place at Beau Rivage in Biloxi, Mississippi. You will not be disappointed.
Our success this year can be tracked to outstanding leadership. We are grateful to have such leaders as Senator David Blount (chair, Senate Gaming Committee), and Representative Casey Eure (chair, House Gaming Committee). Allen Godfrey has provided steady stewardship as the head of the Mississippi Gaming Commission (MGC). He is retiring and we wish him luck in the future. Jay McDaniel has been appointed the new executive director of MGC. Jay has the intellect, skills, and knowledge to lead the MGC in the years ahead. We wish him success in this role.
Momentum has been a result of a successful 2021. We came through difficult circumstances and met our challenges to record gaming revenues that can act as a foundation for building a brighter future. Competition still looms from neighboring states, though, so we must remain vigilant in meeting the challenges that lie ahead. I would anticipate that we will see some legislation regarding mobile sports betting. The appetite is there for our industry. I am hopeful that we can all agree on great legislation that will be better for our industry and state.
We should all be proud of the accomplishments made in 2021, a year defined by the pandemic. We have proven once again that our industry is geared for success no matter the circumstances. Our success, as always, can be tied to our excellent team of GMs, employees, and associate members.
Let’s be thankful for a successful 2021, and let’s keep positive for what’s to come in 2022.
Larry Gregory, Executive Director Mississippi Gaming & Hospitality Association

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