Despite Shutdowns, Hope Of Good News From Fertitta Entertainment/Employee Relief Fund

Goldern Nugget

You remember the old saying, “Every little bit helps”? That is making its return here as there is some news from Houston Rockets owner Tilman Fertitta.

Before basketball shut down, his Houston Rockets had been experimenting with a new style of basketball with no centers on the floor. And now, he’s donating some money to try and help 40,000 furloughed employees of Landry’s.

Fertitta has contributed over $1 million in seed money to try and help these employees who are no longer bringing in any income. He is the CEO and President of Landry’s, which owns Atlantic City casino Golden Nugget.

This comes as added assistance to the two weeks of pay that all employees received following the March 19 decision to let them go.

They were all promised health insurance through June 30 as well, in case of any emergencies come up in the uncertain times.

Health insurance is as critical as any other benefit during the times of a pandemic, so it was a fantastic gesture.

It seems, though, some of what was stated above may be partially false. According to Texas Monthly, “Only salaried workers received the two weeks pay.” In the same breath, they reported that hourly workers were reduced to zero hours and so did not receive anything when they were let go.

Either way, every little bit does help. Fertitta donating $1 million allows for several employees to make some sort of additional money during a time when they cannot work. As somebody that owns and operates several entities, he is able to do what he can to provide.

How Much Per Employee?

Another issue though comes if you break down the number of furloughed employees and the amount of money in the pot. If you divide 1,000,000 by 40,000, it comes out to 25, so $25 is what each employee would get if the amounts were allotted evenly. That is no more than food for a few days.

It is not likely that each operative gets an even share. Those that worked higher-up positions and more hours would likely get the most of it. Splitting anything 40,000 ways would not allow for much of a return for those in need, no matter how much was in the pot.

It does not end with the $1 million, though. The fund is accepting donations, and those that generally spend their money at the casino would likely be willing to contribute to a worthy cause to help those that operate the games they love spending their time playing.

Thinking about just how much money is made by New Jersey casinos each year, there is plenty of optimism to be had about just how large the fund can grow. Just say, hypothetically, 200,000 patrons each donated $10. It seems like a small number, but that amounts to $2 million right there added to the fund.

It brings the “every little bit helps” saying back to relevance. It’s a tough time for this industry, and those that want to do what they can to help now have a fund to deposit into directly. The importance of giving to charity is at the forefront right now, more than ever.

It would not be surprising to see Fertitta add more to this fund from his own pockets. The $1 million starting number was fantastic, given how much a seven-figure sum is. But adding an additional million or two is feasible.

Nevertheless, you love seeing somebody putting so much additional money in to help their employees through uncharted, tough times. Hopefully, this time passes, and these workers get a chance to go back to doing their jobs.


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