“A cursory look around the Perryville floor quickly reveals underutilized and empty machines,” Hayles said in a letter to state and local officials last week. “In a business that depends on energy and customer perception, this perception can be contagious and quickly become reality. Simply put, the higher the slot occupancy, the more appealing the facility, which in turn leads to a more positive customer experience. The perception of a vibrant facility is mutually beneficial because it encourages return visits.”

Hayles said the casino, which was built and is owned by Penn National Gaming, is already making far less money than was estimated by the state in 2008 and things will likely get worse after the opening of a new Harrah’s in Baltimore.

Voters approved opening five Maryland casinos and two are not yet open and running. State officials are also trying to open a sixth casino in Prince George’s County, which both Cordish Cos., which owns and operates Maryland Live!, and Penn National are opposed to. Penn National, however, would be open to building a casino at Rosecroft Raceway in Prince George’s County.

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