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WYOMISSING, PA-One of three of Penn National Gaming’s casinos along the Gulf Coast has re-opened while the company attempts to assess damage at two others. It has established a toll-free hotline to assist displaced employees.

All three of the locally based casino owner’s properties in Mississippi and Louisiana shut down Aug. 28 in anticipation of Hurricane Katrina. Casino Rouge in Baton Rouge, LA re-opened on Aug. 30. Regarding Casino Magic-Bay St. Louis in Bay St. Louis, MO and Boomtown Biloxi in Biloxi, MO, Peter Carlino, Penn National’s CEO, says, “we currently have only preliminary reports on the condition of these properties. It appears that both properties have suffered severe damage; however, access to these sites remains limited.” He adds that due to ongoing safety concerns in the areas, they can’t yet estimate the damage. “We will begin to inspect these sites directly as soon as practicable, pending approval of regional emergency coordinators.”

The owner has established a toll-free employee assistance hotline for displaced employees of the Mississippi properties. “We are urging employees to call … to let us know they’re okay and tell us how we can help address their needs,” Carlino adds. The hotline is staffed by Penn National employees to also provide information on such things as payroll and benefits and potential employment opportunities at other Penn properties.

According to a statement, Penn National carries comprehensive business interruption and property damage insurance for the Mississippi casinos with an overall limit of $400 million. The business interruption component of the policy limit for both affected properties is approximately $58 million and is subject to a five-day deductible. The property damage insurance is subject to deductibles of approximately $6 million for Casino Magic-Bay St. Louis and $3.5 million for Boomtown Biloxi.

For additional Hurricane Katrina coverage, click here.

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