NEW YORK (WPIX)—An emergency rescue plan for off-track betting has saved the jobs of 1300 to 1500 workers, at least for now.
The board of New York City's bankrupt Off-Track Betting Corporation voted on Saturday to continue operations for another year, just one day before a scheduled shutdown of its parlors. Although jobs have been saved, cuts are still being planned for the struggling organization.
The bankrupt company plans to initiate several moves to help cut costs and boost revenue. OTB says it will cut the number of betting parlors by two-thirds, put terminals in bars, defer payments to creditors and push legislation to give workers early retirement.
OTB was scheduled to close its curtains after its board failed to negotiate a deal with unions and New York Governor David Paterson. Now, it says it will appeal to the New York Racing Association for a permanent fix to its financial crisis which has gone from bad to worse and then into filing for bankruptcy reorganization.
Crains New York says "OTB claims that divvying up the cash between the racing industry and governments has left it without enough money to invest in the upkeep or modernization of the city's 65 betting parlors." In the midst of the worst financial crisis to hit the city in years things are not looking up for OTB. Citing the state controlled organization's chairman, Crains says "same-store sales are down more than 5% through the first few weeks of the year."