Two Hollywood Casinos in Ohio Budge to Workers’ Demands

A historical deal was struck between the owners of Hollywood Casino Toledo and Hollywood Casino Columbus in Ohio and two trade unions Thursday, preventing casino employees from going on an immediate strike.

New Four-Year Retroactive Agreement

Penn Entertainment Inc. and representatives of the International Steelworkers and the United Auto Workers union reached a four-year agreement that will see a significant wage increase for the around 900 unionized workers at b tiger711 oth casinos, reported media outlet Toledo Blade.

The agreement was unclear by Thursday mid-afternoon as the casino owners had not presented a final offer to the representatives of the two unions trying to negotiate a better contract for their member workers but around 6 pm, Penn agreed to some of the key wage-revision provisions.

Tony Totty, president of United Auto Workers Local 14 in Toledo, said that the workers had been on a strike alert and the strike was set to begin from midnight on Thursday in case the negotiations did not provide a tentative contract or major progress was registered.

“We’re happy that they’re going to go into the holidays and not have this hanging over their head,” said Eric Sweeney, staff representative for International Steelworkers Local 1-346, hailing the agreement as “a pretty historical deal for them,” bringing “a significant increase over any contract seen since the casinos have been in Ohio.”

Better Health Care Insurance

Casino workers were demanding a raise in current base pay of $6.36 an hour to at least $7.25, not including the tips, which help them average about $20 an hour, $41,600 in annual compensation, as well as more affordable health care insurance.

Totty explained that the workers had insisted on the base pay increase to reduce their reliance on patron generosity, while Sweeney said that for many tipped workers the new deal would only give about a $1 raise, increasing in future years and depending on their knowledge of various table games, but the big enough raise was in health insurance, where workers would be able to afford better options.

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Operated by Penn, one of the largest US casino companies with 40 properties nationwide of which four in Ohio, Hollywood Casino Columbus had generated through November this year gambling revenue of $241.8 million, while at Hollywood Casino Toledo the p for the same eleven-month period was slightly lower, $209.6 million.

The new contract will be presented to the workers next week and, if approved, would be retroactive from December 1. Workers’ vote on the proposal is not expected to happen before the first week of January.