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Choctaw continue management shake-up at Pearl River Resort

Philadelphia, Mississippi (AP) 1-08

The Mississippi Band of Choctaw are continuing a management shake-up at its Neshoba County casinos that began with the hiring of a former Mississippi gaming regulator.

Paul Harvey has been on the job about six weeks as president and chief executive officer of the resort owned by the Mississippi Band of Choctaw Indians. Harvey is the former executive director of the Mississippi Gaming Commission.

“We have launched a top-down examination of the resort’s operations and developed a management plan to put us in a stronger position to compete in the highly competitive entertainment environment,” Harvey said in an interview with The Clarion-Ledger newspaper.

He said the restructuring will include the hiring of a chief operating officer to serve the primary day-to-day management role for the resort and a general manager for each of the resort’s two casinos.

“What we’re doing is fundamentally bringing the property more into line with what you might see at multiple casino properties in the gaming industry. What we’re doing here is not new. It’s pretty standard in the industry. Steve Wynn in Las Vegas used a similar structure when he had The Mirage and Treasure Island. They were contiguous to one another, similar to Golden Moon and Silver Star,” Harvey said.

Companies with multiple properties such as Harrah’s Entertainment, which owns The Sheraton, The Grand and Horseshoe casinos in Tunica, are structured so a regional general manager oversees the three properties, and each property has a general manager, said Larry Gregory, the present director of the Gaming Commission.

The state does not regulate the Choctaws casino operations.

Eight employees lost jobs in a few of the departments at Pearl River Resort, said spokesman Ryan Griffin. Some of them were given an opportunity to find new jobs within the company, he said.

Harvey said each of the general managers at Silver Star Hotel & Casino and Golden Moon Hotel & Casino could be in place in about a month. He said each general manager will be responsible for overseeing casino management and various other departments such as hotel staff, security and marketing.

The organizational changes should result in 100 to 150 new jobs at each casino, Harvey said. The new jobs would be hourly and salaried positions and both management and non-management jobs, he said.

The resort employs from 3,500 people to 4,500 in spring and summer when the two golf courses and its water park are busiest, Harvey said.

Harvey estimates that 40 percent of the customers for the resort are local, 30 percent are from Mississippi and 30 percent are from outside the state.

On the Net
Pearl River Resort, http://www.pearlriverresort.com

 

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