Two Ohio Hollywood Casinos give in to what workers want.

Two Ohio Hollywood Casinos give in to what workers want.

Home > Two Ohio Hollywood Casinos give in to what workers want.

Two Ohio Hollywood Casinos give in to what workers want.

The compromise negotiated with the unions prevented both Penn Entertainment-operated casinos in Ohio from going on strike immediately.

The proprietors of the Hollywood Casinos in Toledo and Columbus, Ohio, and two labor unions reached an unprecedented agreement on Thursday. This prevented the casino employees from going on strike immediately.

New Retroactive Agreement for Four Years

Toledo Blade reported that Penn Entertainment Inc. and representatives of the International Steelworkers and the United Auto Workers unions came to a four-year deal that will give the roughly 900 unionized workers at both casinos a big pay raise.

By mid-afternoon on Thursday, the agreement was still unclear because the casino owners hadn’t made a final offer to the representatives of the two unions trying to negotiate a better contract for their members. However, around 6 p.m., Penn agreed to some of the most important wage-revision provisions.

The employees were on strike alert, according to Tony Totty, president of United Auto Employees Local 14 in Toledo, and the walkout was set to begin on Thursday at midnight if negotiations did not result in a preliminary contract or considerable progress.

“We’re glad they won’t have to worry about this over the holidays,” said Eric Sweeney, a staff representative for International Steelworkers Local 1-346. He called the agreement “a pretty historic deal for them” that brought “a significant increase over any contract seen since the casinos have been in Ohio.”

Better insurance to cover health care for casino workers

Casino workers wanted their base pay, which is currently $6.36 an hour, to go up to at least $7.25 an hour. This doesn’t include tips, which help them make an average of $20 an hour, or $41,600 a year. They also wanted health insurance that was cheaper.

Totty said that the workers wanted the base pay to go up so that they wouldn’t have to rely so much on tips from customers. Sweeney, on the other hand, said that the new deal would only give many tipped workers about a $1 raise, which would go up over time and depend on how well they knew how to play the different table games. However, the workers would be able to afford better health insurance options, which was a big enough raise.

Penn, one of the biggest US casino companies with 40 locations, including four in Ohio, runs the Hollywood Casino Columbus. Through November of this year, the casino had made $241.8 million in gambling revenue, while the same 11-month period at the Hollywood Casino Toledo brought in $209.6 million.

The workers will see the new contract next week, and if they agree to it, it will go back to December 1. The workers aren’t likely to vote on the plan until the first week of January.

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