“A $30,000 job is not the kind of job we ascribe to” Frank Nero of the Beacon Council on “Issues”, aired October 13 on PBS.
There are many considerations (and voices) that public officials must consider as the Genting Corporation (www.genting.com) moves toward creating an all encompassing gambling resort in the heart of Miami. Mr. Nero has responsibly requested the need of an independent review “to study the issues and economic and social impacts that large scale casino gambling would bring to Miami Dade County”.*
Nero’s job comment was in response to Genting stating they would create “well paying jobs between $30,000 and $50,000.” In a state where unemployment is 10.2 percent (September, 2011), what segment of the population where Nero’s comments directed to? The citizens who are currently unemployed? Or the businesses impacted by the spending habits of those concerned about their employment status?
The majority of workers in Miami Dade work in the service industry and the pay scale of these workers resides in the $30,000 range. When the Edition Hotel opens in Miami Beach, outrage will not come for the jobs created at this wage scale. Restaurants open weekly with experienced service professionals commanding a similar wage. An average beginning teacher salary in Florida begins at $33,000.
When Miami was determining the viability of financially contributing to building a ballpark for a private business like the Florida Marlins, job creation was presented as an advantage. Clearly this helped secure the vote and the Marlin’s will begin playing professional baseball in Miami in 2012. Many of those who will work at the ballpark will not make $30,000 a year, though the Beacon Council still approved of the stadium deal.# Carlos Alvarez, the Miami Mayor at the time of the vote, was a proponent of the stadium and this directly led to his being recalled during his second term in office.
When Carlos Gimenez was a Miami Commissioner in 2010, he voted no for the Marlins stadium deal. As the recently voted interim Miami Mayor, Gimenez ’comments at the Beacon Council meeting in Miami last Friday indicated it was important to consider the amount of jobs the Genting project could create.
The litmus test for the Beacon Council to pass is if they highlight the negative influences of gambling on the community at large. If this is a concern that is loudly expressed, then this will further their credibility on this issue. However, the less that is mentioned about the act of gambling itself, the less independent their message will appear.
Hospitality in Miami will thrive with this additional type of venue. We are a business community with high expectations of our product and this will only sharpen everyone’s focus and raise the stakes of our destination being the best in the world. Our community and visitors look to the continuing debate of this issue and the future of its outcome.
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