Sandy Forces Sacrifices for Atlantic City Casino Employees
ATLANTIC CITY, NEW JERSEY — Hurricane Sandy continues to debilitate the already economically depressed Atlantic City.
Reportedly hundreds of workers have been made to sacrifice their wages to compensate for the profits lost in gambling revenue. Trump Entertainment, Inc., is forcing its salaried employees to take an unpaid week’s “vacation” by Dec. 2, and disallowing hourly-wage earners from using paid-vacation time for hours missed due to the storm shutdown.
The Associated Press reported the movement also includes cutting back hours, and will save anywhere from $10 to $12 million.
It was also reported that the Atlantic Club is laying off dozens of workers.
Sandy forced a rare closing of all 12 casinos in Atlantic City after Governor Chris Christie signed a mandatory evacuation order that was in effect from Sunday, Oct. 28 to Friday, Nov. 2.
Anticipatory preparations proved effective against the massive flooding as the casinos received minimal physical damage, as reported by the Wall Street Journal. Of all the casinos in the city, the New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement reported that the Trump Taj Mahal and Trump Plaza suffered the most, dropping more than 30-percent in gambling revenue in comparison to October 2011.
Atlantic City casinos are facing close to a 20-percent drop overall.
According to the local daily, Trump Entertainment sent a Nov. 5 memo to its employees stating the action was necessary to stay in business (the company filed for bankruptcy for a third time in 2010).
Trump Entertainment CEO Bob Griffin had a message for his employees: “We recognize the hardship you and your family are already enduring, however, in order to keep the properties open through the upcoming weeks, our only alternative is to implement a more aggressive savings plan.” — Casey Harper