Casinos are places where people can gamble on games of chance and try their luck at winning some money. They can be anything from the glittering lights and high-rise hotels of Las Vegas to a pai gow table in Chinatown. Gambling is an activity that draws many people from around the world and it is estimated that more than 51 million Americans visited a casino in 2002.

One of the most obvious benefits casinos have is that they bring in tax revenue for their home communities. This money can help the local governments to fund community projects and avoid spending cuts or increasing taxes in other areas.

Another benefit is that casinos create jobs for the local population. This is especially helpful in areas where unemployment is high. The casinos can employ workers in a number of different sectors, from hotel staff to restaurant employees. The higher skilled employees often bring their families to live near the casino, which can increase the overall population in the area.

Although the casino industry was once dominated by gangsters, real estate investors and hotel chains soon realized that they could make a lot of money from the businesses. With mob influence gone, the casinos are able to operate more smoothly and legally. Something about gambling (probably the presence of large amounts of money) seems to encourage cheating and stealing, so casinos spend a great deal of time, effort and money on security.

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