Princess Casinos in Free Zone lay off 81 workers


Eighty-one employees of the Princess casinos at the Corozal
Free Zone are out of a job tonight. A release from the
company cites, (quote) "a dramatic increase in the costs of
doing business," as the primary reason for the lay offs,
referring specifically to higher utility bills, an increase
in casino license fees and business tax. Another major
contributor is declining revenues occasioned by the
legalisation of slot machine arcades in Mexico, the source
of most of the casinos' clientele. As part of its
reorganisation plans the Princess Casino will close its
table games and operate only with slot machines, while the
nearby Golden Princess will maintain the full array of
gambling choices. And while Princess is contracting, a new
entrant to the industry, the Las Vegas Casino will be
opening its doors before the end of the month. The
fifty-five thousand square foot facility will initially
employ around two hundred and fifty people.