COLUMBUS (AP) — A survey says the percentage of Ohioans deemed problem gamblers has doubled since the implementation of racinos and casinos four years ago.
The Ohio Gambling Survey says 0.9 percent of residents or about 76,400 people are problem gamblers, up from 0.4 percent or about 46,200 in 2012.
The survey released Wednesday found that overall about one in 10 Ohioans is considered an at-risk gambler.
State officials say the increase was expected with the arrival of casinos and racinos, or horse tracks outfitted with video slot machines.
They say Ohio’s rate remains below the national average of 2.2 percent of problem gamblers.
Matt Schuler, Ohio Casino Control Commission executive director, says Ohio’s rate has grown slowly and there’s no reason to think it will reach the national average.