Encore shuts hotel, 1K workers laid off

Encore Boston Harbor casino November 4, 2020 in Everett, Massachusetts. (Photo by Jim Mahoney)

Short term a disaster, casino hours slashes

By JOSH RESNEK

The closure of the Encore Hotel last Friday set a disturbing tone for Everett’s largest generator of cash.

Without the hotel open and fully occupied, the city stands to lose $5 million in excise tax- es that the city was depending upon.

The $30 million a year in lieu of taxes the company pays to the city is also a question mark if business is reduced and crowd restrictions remain because of the pandemic.

It remains unknown whether or not the city has collected at least $10 million of that yearly payment that was long overdue.

The short term is a disaster for the casino and hotel.

The longer-term, what might be happening once there is a vaccine and society has tamed the virus and returned to a semblance of normalcy, looks much better for the casino and hotel.

That may be another year away or more.

The hotel shut down months back but re-opened recently. It has been operating at reduced days and severely reduced occupancy for the past 8 months before shutting down completely, again.

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Encore violations add up, massive layoffs announced

Recent problems in and around Encore Boston Harbor has caught the attention of the state commission. (Photo by Jim Mahoney)

By JOSH RESNEK

Despite their original best efforts to meet the state’s strict Coronavirus rules and regulations, Encore has been fined and warned to take action against further incidents.

The Massachusetts Gaming Commission chastised Encore for a large party held on its premises inside the hotel by more than 100 people, most of whom were not wearing masks, in contravention of strict measures ordering otherwise by the state.

The mid-August incident was noted by an employee and reported to Encore officials, who apparently did nothing for three hours until ordering the room vacated.

Subsequently, the MGC at its meeting last Thursday, awarded Encore Boston Harbor mid-March, are now being incrementally laid off permanently.

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Layoffs, cuts crush morale

Everett City Hall. (Photo by Jim Mahoney)

Mayor warns employees to stay quiet on cuts

By JOSH RESNEK

The mayor is showing the leadership qualities of a Donald Trump taking a $14,000 pay raise, telling those who question him that he was forced to take it, and then warning those who have been laid off by him from city employment or had their salaries cut drastically, to keep their mouths shut.

The layoffs and salary cuts over the past two weeks have caused a tidal wave of bad feeling among those affected.

Despite the mayor’s admonition that no one laid off or whose salary has been cut should speak publicly about their plight, that has not stopped most of them from doing so.

“The morale is as low as I’ve experienced it in twelve years,” said a city hall official who told the Leader “I’m not afraid of the mayor or of what he might do to me. I’m heading elsewhere,” he said.

Several businessmen told the Leader Herald they were surprised the city was so short of cash that so many salaries had to be cut and so many had to be laid off.

“This reveals how little he really knows about running the city,” said a prominent businessman of the mayor. “It should be an embarrassment to him and to everyone working for the city that the city is left with so little in financial resources that the only way to save money is to cut city services drastically.”

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3000 employees furloughed due to Coronavirus closing

Staff Report

Encore Boston Harbor Casino and Hotel announced Monday afternoon 3,000 employees will be furloughed due to the Coronavirus taking its toll on the business.

Closed since March 15 and reopening in another week, Encore cannot support all those employees when restrictions placed on the business will seriously impact revenues moving forward.

The furloughs are effective July 1.

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— Eye on Everett —

Bloodbath at Everett Public Schools

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BY JOSH RESNEK 

Crazy and unprecedented happenings littered today’s end of year department meeting at Everett High School. Principal Erick Naumann has called a full staff meeting for Wednesday at 10AM to address sweeping budget cuts to come.

Superintendent Priya Tahiliani is making good on her promise to save teacher-to-student instruction. And teachers are saying this is the most massive budget cutting of administrators they have ever seen.

The emphasis was on making sure as many certified classroom teachers were retained in anticipation of DESE Covid-19 regulations in the fall.

The mandate calls for class sizes of 10 or less. This is a huge issue in Everett schools as classes are routinely 30-35 students. So now, instead of one teacher per 30 students, it will have to be three teachers per 10 students.

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Everett High School. (Photo by JIM MAHONEY)

It has become, as one department head stated, an “All hands on deck” situation with certified teachers. The sweeping changes also requires all EPS staff (outside of one building principal, one vice principal and a skeleton crew of clerical /secretary type) have a teaching certificate in some content area and will be teaching a full course load.  This includes all coaches, all substitute teachers, etc. Here’s a list of the cuts:

– Entire “Academy Model” has been revamped and streamlined to run through Principal Erick Naumann and Vice Principal Christopher Barrett. Potentially there will be two Deans who will only make a 10,000 dollar stipend on top of their regular pay will assist in disciplinary matters.

– All Assistant Principals of Academies positions are eliminated. Consequently, Dr. Omar Easy’s position of Executive Assistant Principal is eliminated.

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