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CHEROKEE, NORTH CAROLINA In an area of North Carolina where there's historically high unemployment, there's good news. Harrah's Cherokee Casino & Hotel is actively recruiting 500 new employees to staff the newly-expanded resort, which expects to be offering live table games no later than August 16.
Harrah's Cherokee Casino & Hotel
“We're pleased to announce that we're hiring 25 percent more employees than originally forecast,”
said Michell Hicks, Principal Chief of the Eastern Band of Cherokee that owns and operates the property.
“These are high-paying jobs averaging $60,000 a year in wages and benefits. That equates to a $30 million infusion into the regional economy in western North Carolina.”
The hiring boom coincides with US Department of the Interior's approval of the amendment to the gaming compact between the Eastern Band of Cherokee and the state of North Carolina. The compact expands the Eastern Band's gaming enterprise on the Qualla Boundary.
EBCI Principal Chief Michell Hicks called the federal approval
“a significant event for the people of western North Carolina, the children of the state and the Cherokee people. Not only are we putting people back to work, we now have the opportunity to invest at an even more significant level in the future of North Carolina.”
Speaking on behalf of the 15,000 registered members of the Eastern Band, Hicks said the agreement also goes beyond creating jobs.
“It also underscores the strong spirit of cooperation that exists between the Eastern Band and the state. We now go forward together to continue to help not just the people in the west, but school children throughout North Carolina in the years ahead.”
Harrah's Cherokee Casino & Hotel will have 100 traditional games available by late November along with a new 18,000 square foot spa.
“The new, expanded complex will be a world-class resort, entertainment and tourist destination,”
said Harrah's Sr. vice president and general manager, Brooks Robinson.The addition of live dealers will attract new tourists, mostly from out of state. The compact is expected to generate as much as $90 million that is planned for use to shore up local education budgets across North Carolina.
In recent years, the Eastern Band has been widely recognized for its stewardship of gaming resources. The tribe has invested in additional jobs, new health care facilities and services, schools, infrastructure, as well as community and environmental improvements.
Chief Hicks also noted that the family vacation experience will be improved under the new compact.
“Truly, we will now have a unparalleled tourist destination in Cherokee that will bring new life to our economy that can be sustained for years to come,”
“This has been a team effort from the very beginning. I would especially like to thank Governor Beverly Perdue, House Speaker Thom Tillis, Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger and the bi-partisan support of the North Carolina General Assembly for sharing our vision of economic growth for our region and the state.”
The $650 million expansion project is one of the largest in the US, offering the greatest number of hotel accommodations in the Carolinas.
posted August 10, 2012 6:20 pm edt