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Despite the lack of an answer from Madison about whether or not the proposed Kenosha casino will move forward, plans are moving along to make sure a workforce is in place in case the project is a go.
Gateway Technical College and the College of Menominee Nation on the Menominee reservation are developing jobs training institutes focusing on preparing workers for an estimated 3,000 jobs in Kenosha and thousands more on the reservation. Another 7,000 ancillary jobs are expected through businesses that support workers in both locations.
Jobs here are expected to include positions in:
- Cafe, Hotel & Casino Management
- Logistics & Security
- Administrative, Finance & Human Resources
- Engineering & Technical Support
- Retail & Entertainment
- Culinary Arts & Food Service
Gateway already has curriculums in most of these fields, but training programs will be tailored to fit the unique needs of a casino, college President Bryan Albrecht told The Journal Times.
“The Menominee Tribe embraces this new collaborative agreement which will help ensure that people filling the new jobs created by the Kenosha project will be correctly matched with appropriate positions and will get the training they need to succeed,” said Gary Besaw, Chairman of the Menominee-Kenosha Gaming Authority, in a joint press release. “Like any smart business, we must plan ahead for the human resources needed to run an enterprise this huge. That takes a lot of planning and preparation so we are not caught flat-footed.”
A jobs website was established in September in anticipation of an approval. Approximately 1,600 applications were submitted by Oct. 31, according to the joint release.
Gov. Scott Walker has until Feb. 19 to make a decision on whether or not to approve the proposed $800 million casino on the site of the former Dairyland dog racing park.
The project was approved by the Department of the Interior in August 2013, but Walker said he would only give his okay if the new casino had the support of the community, didn’t increase net gambling in the state and the remaining Wisconsin tribes also approved.
Support amongst residents and elected officials in both Racine and Kenosha counties is widespread. The Ho-Chunk and Potawatomi tribes are objecting.
Walker had a year from the federal government’s decision to either okay or veto the casino, but he asked for a six-month extension, but he filed for an extension that allowed him to hold off his decision until after the November elections.