349° Recently a prominent Nevada gaming family, the Asguaga’s, sold their casino/hotel property. It was a sign that Reno has finally reached the tipping point in gaming. There is no recovery in the casino industry.
In 1988, President Ronald Reagan signed into law the Indian Gaming Regulatory Act that opened the flood gates of Native American involvement in the industry. By the dawn of the 21st century it was apparent that the boom of new casinos in California would siphon off gaming revenues in Nevada for the foreseeable future.
After over a decade of declining profits, Reno casino properties try to carve up a dwindling piece of the tourism dollar. The problem is that the Nevada gaming industry has nothing new to attract people to Reno, nor can they shake the paradigm that gambling is the only means to earn revenue.
241° Gaming has a dark side that is never discussed in public in Nevada. Near every casino area will be pawn and quick loan businesses ready to suck in the weak and gullible tourist or resident. In addition, gaming areas create the perfect storm of people out late at night, drunk, with cash. Violent crime in Nevada always ranks near the top in the United States, in part because tourist are easy prey to the criminal element that hang out in the shadows of the glitz of casinos.
246° It is unfortunate that gaming ever came to Reno. Nestled near Lake Tahoe, the Sierra Nevada mountains, and a four-hour drive to San Francisco and the ocean, the town could be filled with diverse industries making it nearly recession proof, but because the community has become dependent on the gaming industry, it has no will to challenge the hand that used to feed it. In ten years or less, Reno will be the next Detroit.