To pay $80M in severance packages

Mirage closure could spark disparity in severance payouts for non-union workers

Reading time 1:52 min

As The Mirage, a fixture on the Las Vegas Strip, readies for closure, projections indicate its operators will allocate roughly $80 million in severance packages for departing employees. Yet, amid this process, disparities could emerge as not all employees may receive equal payouts, according to local media reports.

Upon its closure on July 17, a total of 3,350 employees, including 140 Day One hires, will be laid off, as disclosed by Hard Rock International during the announcement of the closure in May, the Las Vegas Review-Journal reported.

Unionized employees represented by Culinary Local 226 and Bartenders Local 165 are slated to receive $2,000 for each year of service, as per the terms negotiated during city-wide contract talks in 2023. This could result in severance packages exceeding $60,000 for some of the most tenured workers under the union agreement. The Culinary contract extends to approximately 1,700 hospitality workers.

However, non-unionized employees, such as those in the casino sector, will receive a different severance structure. They are entitled to two weeks’ pay for every year of service, capped at $20,000, as outlined in a property FAQ document retrieved by Review-Journal. Additionally, they will receive an extra month of health benefits continuation and payment for unused paid time off, the report said.

Joe Lupo, President of The Mirage, noted that a majority of employees will not be affected by the cap.

“We have taken significant steps to ensure that those who wish to find new employment after the Mirage closure, have the opportunity and access to do so as quickly and seamlessly as possible. It is our number one priority,” Lupo said in the statement, as per the report.

"We could not be happier to have such a great turnout from our friends at many of the other local properties here in Las Vegas, with thousands of jobs available, many say they can’t hire great talent fast enough and welcome the opportunity."

In anticipation of the closure, several job fairs have been scheduled for Mirage employees in June. These include events hosted by Hard Rock International, Seminole Hard Rock, and MGM Resorts International, as well as others featuring 16 confirmed companies.

The Mirage, which played a pivotal role in the development of the Las Vegas megaresort scene upon its opening in 1989, was acquired by Hard Rock International from MGM Resorts International in 2022 for over $1 billion. Hard Rock, owned by the Seminole Tribe of Florida, plans to shutter the property for three years to facilitate the construction of a 660-foot-tall guitar-shaped hotel tower and other enhancements.

Despite the closure, Hard Rock officials have announced plans to employ 6,000 workers upon the property's reopening. Notably, Mirage or union seniority will not be retained, requiring employees to reapply and interview for positions at the revamped property.

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