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Greenwood Gaming & Entm’t v. Comonwealth

Pennsylvania Supreme Court

November 17, 2021

Place your bets! The Pennsylvania Supreme Court held that concert tickets, which a casino distributed to its patrons for playing table games and slot machines at its facility, are not “services” for purposes of calculating the casino’s taxable revenues generated by those games and machines under Section 1103 of the Gaming Act. Thus, they were excludable from the casino’s taxable revenue. Appellee operates Parx Casino. To encourage gameplay, Appellee distributed to patrons, who played its slot machines and table games, tickets to attend live concerts and entertainment performances by artists such as Jay-Z, Beyonce, Justin Timberlake, and Lady Gaga. Appellee filed a petition for refund with the Board of Appeals of the Department of Revenue, seeking to exclude the portion of the price it paid for the concert and performance tickets. The Board of Appeals denied Greenwood’s refund petition. The Board of Finance and Revenue also denied the petition. The Commonwealth Court reversed, and the Supreme Court affirmed. The Supreme Court interpreted the statute and concluded that the concert tickets constituted personal property within the definition of gross table game revenue as well as gross terminal revenue, and were not services.

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