Video gaming in Illinois has generated nearly $785 million in state and local tax revenue since it began in September 2012.
That's according to a recent analysis by the Illinois Gaming Machine Operators Association, a video gaming industry group.
There are now over 24,000 video gaming machines in Illinois, which produce $22 million in monthly state revenue intended for capital infrastructure projects, according the association.
Roughly 150 Illinois communities do not allow video gaming. If they allowed video gaming, annual revenue from the machines could increase to nearly $500 million, the Illinois Gaming Machine Operators Association found.
"And that figure could top $700 million - and create and support another 20,000 jobs - if the city of Chicago allowed video gaming," the group added in a press release last week. "Right now, nearly 45 percent of Illinoisans live in areas where video gaming is not allowed."
"Video gaming isn't the right fit for every Illinois community, but we're seeing many communities reap the benefits of adding this form of entertainment and rethink their initial concerns," the association's president Michael Gelatka said in a statement. "We think there are a number of smart ways for legislators and these local communities to work with us to provide more jobs and economic opportunity. We look forward to making our case with them, using these strong numbers to show we can produce the results we all want."
Opponents of video gaming have cited concerns over addiction and the societal costs associated with gambling.