News that Gateway Casinos is laying off seven people at their Sudbury Downs operation, and reducing their operating hours, has some city councillors concerned.
Ward 3 Coun. Gerry Montpellier raised the issue at Tuesday's council meeting, a day after Gateway announced the job cuts. Sudbury Downs is located in Montpellier's ward.
Gateway said the cuts are a result of automation and wouldn't affect its plans to build a full-fledged casino on the Kingsway, where it will add another 250 jobs.
But Ward 4 Coun. Evelyn Dutrisac wants staff to meet with them to find out what's going on.
“They are taking away 50 hours from the casino right now,” Dutrisac said. “What is their plan? If we're working closely with them, I would like our staff to meet with them.
“It's a community issue. I'd like to have some answers.”
City CAO Ed Archer said they have regular contact with people involved in the Kingsway Entertainment District, and will raise the issue with Gateway.
“We take that as an undertaking,” Archer said.
Eleethea Savage, manager of special projects, updated council on progress on the big projects. She said public consultations on festival square – a design feature part of the new $100 million arena in the KED – will begin next week and continue into July.
An open house is planned June 20.
The next stage for the arena is to pick who will actually design and build the structure, with the RFP going out in late summer.
“The design/build RFP is being reviewed by the fairness monitor,” Savage said.
PricewaterhouseCoopers is also negotiating a term sheet for the Sudbury Five, the arena's new basketball tenant.
Event centre flooring is also being purchased for fall 2018 basketball season.