After a highly controversial debut, keno has so far been a bust in Nova Scotia and could be on the way out.

The Progressive Conservatives brought in the video lottery game this spring despite protests from gambling awareness groups who worried it would increase problem gambling.

But keno hasn’t caught on and is bringing in lower-than-expected profits. Now the NDP government, who were critical of the game while in opposition, may drop it altogether.


“I’ve asked the gaming corporation to prepare briefing notes on how the game is going and how much it would cost the province to leave the game,” Finance Minister Graham Steele told reporters last week.

“It’s easier to exit from a game that’s not working. But I don’t want to form the judgment today already that it’s not working, but the fact that revenues are quite considerably less than projected is one indication that it’s not a game that’s working.”

Keno involves buying tickets then watching the TV screen in the bar or restaurant a few minutes later for the winning numbers.

Steele said he’ll wait until he’s fully briefed before making a decision.

“I don’t want to walk into government and say I know all the answers,” he said.