LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- Hundreds of employees at the Colorado Belle in Laughlin, Nevada are facing "indefinite" layoffs amid coronavirus-related gaming closures in the state, according to Golden Entertainment.
In a letter sent to employees, the company said the severity of the economic impact brought on by shuttered casinos prompted the decision.
The move will impact some 400 employees at the Colorado Belle, CFO Charles Protell said in the letter. Additionally, the company's head of human resources told staffers there were "no current plans" to reopen the resort.
Coverage for those affected will extend through May, but employees were encouraged to seek employment at sister properties.
GOLDEN ENTERTAINMENT LETTER TO EMPLOYEES
“The significant economic impact from the Governor’s ordered closure of our industry and continued uncertainty of when we will be allowed to fully resume operations has caused us to make the difficult decision to extend layoffs indefinitely for approximately 400 team members at the Colorado Belle in Laughlin. We will continue benefits coverage for effected team members through May and will try to place these team members with our other properties that may have open positions.
This decision has not been made lightly, but unfortunately we see this as our only recourse to mitigate ongoing expenses and anticipated reduced business levels while facing competitive pressures from neighboring states allowing their casinos to reopen.
Charles Protell, President and Chief Financial Officer of Golden Entertainment, Inc."
"To All Team Members of Colorado Belle:
As you are aware, on March 17, 2020, due to the global pandemic, Governor Sisolak ordered the closure of all non-essential businesses in Nevada, including casinos. You were notified of this action and your layoff status in the letters sent to affected Team Members dated April 3, 2020.
The economic impact of this government ordered closure to our industry and to our company has been significant.
As we begin moving into this next phase of our operations, we anticipate reduced business levels which will last for an unknown period of time. Due to these challenging circumstances, the Company has no current plans to reopen the Colorado Belle property and the layoffs currently in place will extend indefinitely.
If you are enrolled in Golden Entertainment benefit plans, your coverage will end on May 31, 2020 and you will become eligible to elect coverage through COBRA. Detailed information from the Benefits Department will be forthcoming.
These are not decisions that have been made lightly. We thank you for your service and invite you to apply for any open positions at other Company properties.
Vice President of Human Resources
Golden Entertainment, Inc."
This is a developing story. Check back for updates.