Nevada Casinos Likely To Reopen At 100 Percent Capacity By June 1
Posted on: April 13, 2021, 09:49h.
Last updated on: June 23, 2021, 01:54h.
Nevada has a new reopening target: to be at 100 percent statewide capacity by June 1, Gov. Steve Sisolak, D, announced Tuesday. The state’s gaming properties will probably be at full capacity by that date, too, according to a gaming attorney.
During a press conference, Sisolak said he is “very confident every county in the state of Nevada will be able to fully reopen at 100 percent capacity by June 1…. That is Nevada’s goal.”
As far as casinos, they will remain under the supervision of the Nevada Gaming Control Board (NGCB), Sisolak adds.
I know that the gaming control board wants to return to normal just as much as everyone else does, which is why they worked so hard with casino owners, local leaders, and employee unions to set up vaccination sites on gaming properties.”
On Tuesday, the governor did not specify if the NGCB will allow casinos to move to 100 percent capacity as of June 1, or even sooner. But Anthony Cabot, Distinguished Fellow of Gaming Law at UNLV’s Boyd School of Law, predicts casinos will reach full capacity by June.
While the casinos will remain under the gaming control board review, they almost certainly will be allowed to return to full capacity by June 1,” Cabot told Casino.org. “They may, however, still have more stringent health standards than other businesses in their county if the Nevada regulators decide that additional restrictions are necessary to protect the health of the visitors and employees.”
In addition, Clark County, which includes Las Vegas and the Strip, proposed that starting on May 1, “Large gatherings can be approved 120 days out if there are less than 1,250 reported cases per week and the 14-day average percent positivity is less than 6 percent,” KLAS, a local TV station, reported.
Masks Still Must Be Worn
Sisolak further announced that masks will continue to be required throughout Nevada. The governor also wants to see as many Nevadans as possible getting COVID-19 vaccines as soon as they can. He explained that these are the two best ways to prevent any potential spike in COVID-19 cases.
In addition, Nevada will remove the statewide social distancing mandate as of May 1. But social distancing will remain in place. It will be directed by county officials.
As of Tuesday, about 40 percent of Nevadans 16 years of age and older have started getting vaccines. About a quarter in that age range are now fully vaccinated.
Nevada saw 412 new cases of COVID-19 as of Tuesday. There were seven new deaths. Since the outbreak began, Nevada has seen more than 308,755 cumulative cases. That includes 5,339 deaths as of Monday.
When reviewing Sisloak’s statement, Stephen Miller, director of UNLV’s Center for Business and Economic Research, told Casino.org “Some public health authorities caution that we are not ‘out of the woods’ with respect to COVID-19. The future path of variants to COVID-19 provide the wild card to gaining control over the pandemic.”
Sisolak’s announcement also may put county authorities between a rock and a hard place “if the public health numbers head north again. That is, the governor’s announcement will up the pressure on county authorities to meet the 100-percent goal, even if the pandemic numbers suggest a pullback is needed,” Miller said.
“The governor also announced that the Nevada Gaming Control Board would set public health standards for casinos and gaming floors. This also opens the possibility that conflicting requirements will emanate from counties and the gaming control board.”
Caesars Urges Workers To Get Vaccines
When reached for comment on the governor’s announcement, a Caesars Entertainment spokesperson told Casino.org, “We are grateful for Governor Sisolak’s continued, thoughtful leadership — and are heartened by his goal to reopen Nevada at 100 percent capacity by June 1.
“We strongly encourage all Caesars Entertainment team members to get vaccinated — and are continuing to provide free and convenient COVID-19 vaccines.”
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