Northwest Indiana casino workers to Meet at Statehouse
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February 04, 2013
A delegation of several casino employees from Northern Indiana is heading to
Indianapolis on Tuesday, February 5, to ask state lawmakers to ensure casinos
keep their promise of stable jobs for Indiana communities. The Indiana General
Assembly is currently considering a "bailout" (Senate Bill 528) for Indiana
casinos that could see as much as $235 million in state tax revenue handed back
to casino operators. Casinos were approved in Indiana based to generate revenue
for state and local governments and to provide stable jobs for Indiana
Data shows that Indiana casinos have reduced jobs in recent years. According to
figures released by the Indiana Department of Workforce Development, during
December 2012, Indiana's "Gaming Industries" directly employed only 12,700
people – down 1,200 jobs from five years ago and down 3,300 jobs from 10 years
ago, even as several new facilities have opened up.
The Majestic Star Casino in Gary, Indiana shows how Indiana casinos have broken
their jobs promise. In November 2012, the Majestic Star laid-off 80 employees
with no advance notice to the workers. Laid-off employees, some of whom were
eventually returned to work, had worked at Majestic Star for as long as sixteen
The Majestic Star Casino is controlled by Wayzata Investment Partners, a
Minnesota-based investment firm with around $7.5 billion in assets.
"These out-of-state owners who control billions are coming to Indiana and taking
away our jobs," Alisha Coleman, a laid-off Majestic Star worker, told the
Post-Tribune in November.
The casino bill would be a "blank check" to casino owners, many of them
out-of-state investment funds like Wayzata, which could easily just shift the
money to billionaire out-of-state investors with no benefit to Indiana. Instead,
Indiana casino employees believe any casino "bailout" bill should ensure money
is invested in casino jobs in Indiana – where the investment will reduce
unemployment and help drive the Indiana economy.
Return to Indiana Casinos.