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2 St. Louis area casinos to lay off 774

River City Casino & Hotel and Hollywood Casino St. Louis is laying off hundreds of workers
Credit: SLBJ

ST. LOUIS — The Hollywood and River City casinos in St. Louis County will lay off 774 workers, they said.

The news comes as St. Louis County allows casinos to reopen Monday, while competitors in St. Charles County and the city of St. Louis opened more than two weeks ago.

River City Casino & Hotel, in South County, said it would lay off 329 employees on Aug. 15. Hollywood Casino St. Louis, in Maryland Heights, put the number at 455, effective the same day.

Both are owned by Gaming and Leisure Properties Inc. (Nasdaq: GLPI) and operated by Penn National Gaming of Pennsylvania (Nasdaq: PENN). They cited COVID-19 shutdowns as reasons for the move.

From River City's letter to the state of Missouri:

"We simply could not foresee, that the initial closures of our properties, that were issued by one or two states for a limited period of time, ultimately spread throughout all the states in which we operate and eventually be extended, interrupting almost all business and travel temporarily. These significant drags on our business will likely continue for the foreseeable future. Finally, we could not have anticipated when our properties would be allowed to reopen and how restrictive the new operating conditions would be, and the negative impact this would have on business volumes."

Ameristar Casino Resort Spa in St. Charles said last month that furloughs may become permanent layoffs for up to 60% of its employees.

RELATED: Reopening advice from a local government that did it first

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