616,000 out of work across America’s casinos; 206,000 in Nevada
CARSON CITY, Nev. — The American Gaming Association says the coronavirus has put an estimated 616,000 gaming employees out of work nationwide.
AGA President Bill Miller said Friday that 95 percent of the country’s 465 commercial casinos — many of which are in Nevada and currently shut down amid Gov. Steve Sisolak’s executive order — and 76 percent of the 524 tribal casinos have been shut down to slow the spread of the virus.
Nevada makes up roughly one-third of the unemployed, according to the AGA, at roughly 206,000 casino employees.
“The impact to our employees, their families and communities is staggering and the implications extend far beyond the casino floor,” Miller said. “Leading technology companies that supply the industry and the nearly 350,000 small business employees that rely on gaming for their families and communities are bearing the brunt of this economic standstill and will continue to suffer if Congress and the administration don’t take immediate action.”
He pointed out that half the jobs the industry supports are at non-gambling businesses, including restaurants and local shops.
He said casino closures involve nearly $74 billion in annual wages nationwide along with $41 billion in tax and tribal revenues. Miller said the industry delivers $52 billion a year in small business revenue including construction, manufacturing, retail and wholesale businesses.
He said if all those casinos were to remain closed for eight weeks, the U.S. economy will lose $43.5 billion in economic activity.
“I point out many cases of where privately owned companies do just as bad a job as publicly owned companies,” says Reno resident and former teacher Robert (R.D.) Gardner.