Deadline looms in Detroit casino contract talks
Contract extension with unions is set to expire at midnightThe New Contract Affects Dealers, Bartenders And Others Involved With Gaming
Detroit's three casinos and their unions face a midnight deadline tonight to reach a new deal before a contract extension expires.
MGM Grand Detroit, MotorCity Casino-Hotel and Greektown Casino Hotel as well as UAW Local 7777 and other unions are negotiating on economic issues.
Members of the unions' Detroit Casino Council have approved a strike if an agreement is not reached by the deadline "to maintain the wages, benefits and working conditions they deserve," according to a statement by Hotel Employees and Restaurant Employees Local 24, which represents cleaning, maintenance and other workers.
The Detroit Casino Council includes workers from Local 24; UAW Local 7777, which represents dealers and slot technicians; Teamsters Local 372, which represents valet and warehouse employees; Operating Engineers Local 547, which represents engineers and other trades positions; and the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters.
"MotorCity Casino Hotel and the Detroit Casino Council have agreed to … continue to meet and negotiate in good faith in hopes of reaching an agreement on a new contract prior to the new deadline," said MotorCity spokeswoman Jacci Woods in an email.
"I am unable to comment while negotiations are in process," said MGM spokeswoman Yvette Monet in Las Vegas.
Greektown had no comment. UAW Local 7777 did not return calls for comment.
Revenues by the three casinos have increased 2.9 percent through the first nine months of this year compared with the same time last year, according to the Michigan Gaming Control Board.
The two largest gaming halls — MotorCity and MGM Grand — have experienced revenue increases through the first three quarters. Greektown, which last year emerged from bankruptcy protection, has posted a 1.8 percent revenue loss through the first nine months of the year.
National gaming analyst Frank Fantini has said the Detroit casinos' results reflect gains from the economic recovery.
It remains uncertain how much of the revenue increases are fueled by promotional free-play credits that customers redeem at casino games.
Unlike some other states, Michigan requires casinos to count free-play incentives as official revenue.