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Boston Globe: From Pennsylvania, A Cautionary Tale Of Casino Profits Trailed By Corruption

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Few states have a more compelling story to tell about how casino gambling is helping to balance the government’s books than Pennsylvania. Just five years after its first slot parlor opened, Pennsylvania now has 10 full-scale casinos, paying an annual $1.3 billion in taxes. That’s more revenue than New Jersey, Nevada, or any other state in the country.

Yet Pennsylvania’s story is also about how badly things can go wrong within the halls of government when billions of dollars are at stake. The financial success of Pennsylvania’s casinos was built on the ambitious scope of the effort and the rich profitability of the industry, but also on a foundation of cronyism, patronage, and back-room deals, not to mention overlooked criminal histories and alleged mob ties, according to a grand jury report released earlier this year.

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