LAS VEGAS (FOX5) -- Some construction workers with Teamsters Local 631 are considering leaving Las Vegas because they have no work to do.
Teamsters Local 631 business agent James Harmer said they usually have 3-4,000 members working full-time on a regular basis on Strip and in downtown.
“Each of those members is currently completely out of work in a market where hospitality has been decimated,” said Harmer. 
“Members are hurting. I mean they want to get back to work, they want their jobs,” said union steward James Turner. 
Without conventions or trade shows, there are no jobs for Teamsters Local 631.
Most of Las Vegas’ biggest conventions were canceled this year like the National Association of Broadcasters, MAGIC, ISC Security and CES 2021 recently announced it is going digital.
“The LVCVA has shows still on the calendar. And ‘on the calendar’ is the key word. So we remain hopeful that those shows won't cancel. But as time comes and draws nearer to that event we’re getting the 30 to 45 day out cancellations for shows, which seems to be an ongoing domino effect,” said Harmer. 
The union relies on more than just the big shows too. Las Vegas hosts hundreds of smaller trade shows every year but those are also canceled. 
Harmer said on top of international travel restrictions, liability is another issue.
“Associations can’t afford to come to Las Vegas put on a trade show and then be slammed with lawsuits over [COVID-19],” he said. 
Harmer and Turner said they’re trying to encourage members to stay hopeful and stick around but many still haven’t received unemployment. They said they understand why some families might need to leave the valley all together. 
“You need to do what you can to prepare for yourself and your family whatever that may be so you have food on the table and you can pay your bills and make it through to when work does come back,” said Turner. 
Conventions are a billion dollar industry nationwide. There are a lot of different groups involved -- contractors, associations and corporations.
Harmer said there are people lobbying and fighting to bring back trade shows once it is safe.

Las Vegas Convention Center in Las Vegas on March 12, 2020.

Copyright 2020 KVVU (KVVU Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.

FOX5 Multimedia Journalist

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(6) comments


Gross misstatement in conventions being a $1B industry nationwide. Try a $20B industry nationally that employs many thousands of people directly and indirectly. Unfortunately much of the work that is done to put on conventions, trade shows and corporate events is behind the scenes and not visible to those that attend, such as the work the contractors, facilities, hotels, transportation, Teamsters, IBEW, IATSE and culinary members do to ensure their success. Conventions are also an incubator for innovation and where people get together to showcase the latest technology. We’ve been working hard as an industry to both raise awareness to all this and promote ways to safely get people back together and back to work, which we all hope to do very soon.

Voz de Razon

Sisolak forgot he works FOR the people. Actual, individual people. With real lives. We need to eat every day.

He thinks we're just pets, here for his amusement.

What's that? People aren't living in fear? I'll just pump up those numbers and shut stuff down. That'll show those disobedient feral cats that I'm the boss.

Jowls Sisolak needs to be reminded that this whole thing was just to FLATTEN THE CURVE! Not to end life as we know it because someone might sneeze.


Reality is often painful. This city overbuilt hotels, and is far to reliant on gambling and tourism. None of the Einstein's that have run this state and city for the last decade has ever given any thought to planning for something like this, instead just approve more casino and hotel building. Clark County will take longer to recover from this than just about any other, because there is nothing to offer workers and residents as far as real jobs. Any time a legitimate business considers moving to Clark County the hurdles go up, and obstacles put in place one after another. The local casinos don't want it, for they would have to pay employees more to work for them, and pay higher benefits too. Something that upper management says no to time after time. Perfect example was Tesla. Wanted to move here but was not welcomed with open arms. And the end result is they are now happily relocating to Texas. So guys it is was it is. The casinos run Nevada always have and always will. Should be the state runs the casinos, but anyone with a brain knows it will never happen. Too much money changes hands for that to ever happen.


Spot on. I have been saying it for a long time. Too much growth regarding Casino's and not enough of anything else except, warehouses and hospitals. And yes, Tesla should have been welcomed with open arms. The Casino Heads are merely destroying themselves and will regret it later. Their GREED is going to COST them in the end. I have been seeing this city becoming a ghost town and well, it looks like my prediction is coming to reality and it's not going to be pleasant. Many that have moved here, also insisted that things be changed to what they left. In the process their greed and small minded thinking, and whiny ways have ruined Vegas. Wanting Democrat this or Democrat that, etc. Its funny, we first moved here eons ago in the 1990's and things were great. And should have STAYED that way. Instead, slowly the changes started and in 2014, we really saw it. Now, we have ARIA, Cosmopolitan, and others and yes, one unfinished building across from Circus Circus. Its an eyesore and an embarrassment to Vegas. Now, the Tropicana is up for sale....

Vegas is going to take a long time to crawl out from under ~ if ever.

Voz de Razon

You're right. Dems flee from their hellholes complaining about high taxes etc. When they get to their new place, they get to work setting up the same thing they just fled from.

Stop Kalifornia-ing our Nevada.


This is nothing new and definitely not new since 2014. California and Nevada have been tied together at the hip since before statehood. Nevada's senators and many government officials used to live in San Francisco. Economically and politically Nevada has essentially been a colony of California our industries being mining, military, or tourism have all been shaped by California interests. I'm not saying it is good, but it is our history.

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