In Atlantic City and the membership of the Local 54 branch of the Unite Here trade union has reportedly voted in favor of authorizing a full-blown strike against the city’s collection of nine casinos amid a row over pay.

According to a report from the Associated Press news service published by The Press of Atlantic City newspaper, some 96% of those balloted voted to give the union’s negotiating committee the right to call a strike next month should no progress on desired ‘significant’ salary increases be reached.

Imminent initiation:

Bob McDevitt leads the Local 54 arm of the Unite Here union and he reportedly declared that ‘several thousand’ people employed by Atlantic City’s casinos had cast their votes in the strike ballot. The representative also detailed that his organization now has the authority to okay a walk-out at MGM Resorts International’s 2,767-room Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa venue as well as the Caesars Atlantic City Hotel and Casino, Tropicana Atlantic City and Harrah’s Resort Atlantic City properties of Caesars Entertainment Incorporated from the first day of July.

Safe sites:

The Local 54 leadership has reportedly already inked ‘me-too’ deals with the owner of the 1,400-room Ocean Casino Resort, Ilitch Holdings Incorporated, as well as Bally’s Corporation, which runs the Bally’s Atlantic City enterprise. McDevitt purportedly disclosed that this means these New Jersey venues are likely set to avoid strike action as they have agreed to abide by the terms of any contracts subsequently agreed with Caesars Entertainment Incorporated and MGM Resorts International.

McDevitt reportedly stated…

“The industry better not take this lightly as this is a no ‘BS’ thing. Bally’s Atlantic City and Ocean Casino Resort are in the green zone, Resorts Casino Hotel and Golden Nugget Atlantic City are in the yellow zone and the rest are in the red zone.”

Expense escalation:

The vote on whether to strike was reportedly held two weeks after Local 54 members began picketing outside of Caesars Entertainment Incorporated’s 2,364-room Tropicana Atlantic City property. These workers are purportedly angry that casinos in Atlantic City are continuing to post improving revenues in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic while rising inflation is eating away at their own purchasing power.

Perplexing picture:

The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement earlier reportedly divulged that Atlantic City casinos chalked up aggregated receipts of more than $4.2 billion last year. But the properties have purportedly long argued that online casino and sportsbetting revenue streams are not what they seem due to the fact that their facilities are only allowed to pocket about 30% of any proceeds with the rest going in tax and payments to third-party providers.