ATLANTIC CITY — Former employees of the closed Trump Plaza Hotel and Casino are finally getting what has been contractually owed to them for nearly four years.
Nearly 354 eligible former workers can collect their $1,500 checks from the office of Unite Here Local 54 on Oct. 18 and 19, a representative from the casino employees’ union said Thursday.
The payments were contractually negotiated by the union and Trump Entertainment Resorts in 2009 in the event the casino hotel property closed. In September 2014, Trump Entertainment filed for bankruptcy and closed the 900-plus-room casino hotel at the base of the Atlantic City Expressway. Nearly 1,300 employees lost their jobs as a result.
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Bob McDevitt, president of Local 54, said the former Plaza employees have waited far too long to collect money that was rightfully theirs.
“The length of time this has taken to get in the hands of the workers is an indictment of the bankruptcy court system,” he said Thursday. “This should have been resolved a long time ago.”
Eligible workers must meet certain criteria in order to collect, including having worked at the property for more than one year, stayed employed with the property until it closed or been full-time employees. Workers who were laid off within 90 days of the Plaza closing are also eligible.
Donna DeCaprio, financial secretary and treasurer of Local 54, said employees who cannot come in person to the union hall on Atlantic Avenue on the scheduled dates can either schedule an alternate date to pick up their closing check or call to have them mailed out.
DeCaprio said she expects to mail a bulk of the checks.
The closing of the Plaza capped off a year that saw four city casino properties close. Atlantic Club Casino Hotel, Showboat Atlantic City, Revel Hotel Casino also closed in 2014.
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Local 54 filed an administrative claim in a Delaware bankruptcy court seeking release of the severance pay. In November 2014, Trump Entertainment argued in bankruptcy court for release of the severance payments as well as payouts to nearly 312 eligible employees for accrued vacation time.
In 2016, Icahn Enterprises purchased a controlling interest in Trump Entertainment. Icahn Enterprises still owns the property.
The company’s CEO, Carl Icahn, has tried, unsuccessfully, to have a portion of paid Investment Alternative Taxes used to fund the demolition of the property. To date, no demolition permits have been filed with the city.