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South Point furloughing most employees indefinitely

Updated April 20, 2020 - 12:50 pm

South Point is furloughing most of its employees “for an indefinite period,” starting May 3.

In a letter sent to staff on Monday, owner Michael Gaughan encouraged workers to file for unemployment immediately.

“By being furloughed, you will be better off,” Gaughan said in the letter obtained by the Review-Journal. “You will receive more money from both the State and Federal Government than what you are currently receiving from South Point.”

Gaughan acknowledged that filing an unemployment claim “can be difficult” during the crisis; the filing system is currently processing thousands of claims from workers across the state.

The company will maintain workers’ health benefits through July 31, and will cover health payroll insurance deductions through that time, according to the letter. All other benefit payroll deductions will end after May 3.

Some South Point workers will have the option to work full time to maintain the property during the shutdown. Those who choose to work full time will receive paid time off credit and two meals a day.

As the property reopens, Gaughan said, other workers may be hired back, but he warned it would take time to ramp up operations again. Workers will not have to be reprocessed as a new employee once they take their jobs back.

“Unfortunately, it may take several months to get back to full employment due to the lack of business,” Gaughan said.

Those who resign or are not brought back will receive any accumulated paid time off they’re due.

A Monday statement from South Point confirmed plans to furlough “most of (its) employees” due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and resort closure.

About 1,500 of South Point’s 2,200 workers have been there more than 10 years, Gaughan told the Review-Journal in 2018. Nearly a quarter have worked with him for more than 20 years. South Point workers do not belong to Culinary Local 226 or Bartenders Local 165.

Contact Bailey Schulz at bschulz@reviewjournal.com or 702-383-0233. Follow @bailey_schulz on Twitter.

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