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As confirmed by CEO LuAnn Pappas, the machines are the first in the area and of the same kind already in use in Las Vegas, which allow customers to convert their crypto coin into cash to use at the casino. With the state of Mississippi falling short on the use of technology in the gambling industry, and mobile sports betting still not authorized, this could be an important step forward in the upgrading of the market.
Scarlet Pearl Casino in D’Iberville, Mississippi, announced the installation of a cryptocurrency ATM machine, as confirmed by CEO LuAnn Pappas to members of the Gulf Coast Business Council at the October meeting in Gulfport. The machines, which are already in use in Las Vegas, allow customers to convert their crypto coin into cash to use at the casino.
Mississippi does not regulate whether cryptocurrency ATM machines can be operated at a casino, according to Jay McDaniel, Executive Director of the state’s Gaming Commission, as reported by the Associated Press. However, the state does not allow yet to use cryptocurrency or a credit card directly in a slot machine.
McDaniel said going cashless in Mississippi is something the Gaming Commission would consider if the casino operators requested it, as COVID has pushed that discussion. The state currently falls behind other regulated markets within the U.S. when it comes to technology and payment options.
Resorts World Las Vegas opened this summer with a cashless casino floor and cashless payments for restaurants, shops and entertainment. Other casino operators are looking at upgrading technology to match the new trends in business within the casino industry.
“While consumers have been accustomed to making mobile payments or using cards for nearly all other goods and services, land-based casino gaming has remained primarily dependent on cash transactions,” the American Gaming Association said in its State of the States 2020 report.
Mobile sports betting allows fans to place a bet from their computer or smartphone within states that allow it. In September, New Jersey became the first state to take in more than $1 billion in bets in a single month at the casino sports books and on computers and phones.
Mississippi was the fourth state to legalize and open sports betting, but has yet to allow mobile betting. While betting by phone inside a Mississippi casino is allowed, only one casino, Gold Strike in Tunica allows customers to bet with their app in the casino.
In September, the BetMGM mobile app became available for download in Mississippi. Using geolocation technology, customers at Gold Strike can place pre-game, live in-play, futures and parlay wagers from any mobile device.
CEO LuAnn Pappas said Thursday most of the workers already have the two shots. The Coast casino has been looking for ways to get its staff members inoculated since March, when it started paying them $300 to get fully vaccinated. In July, it was the first casino operator in Mississippi to require vaccinations
The Scarlet Pearl Casino in D Iberville requested nearly 900 employees to get vaccinated against COVID-19 by Friday, August 27 in order to stay in the job.
The deadline to get the first dose was 9 a.m. last Friday, according to CEO LuAnn Pappas, who assured that most have already had their two shots, Sun Herald reports.
In July, Pappas was the first casino operator in Mississippi to require vaccinations for all salaried employees, with the first dose s due date set for August 14. Now the requirement has been extended to all employees.
Pappas said that, despite having received some negative feedback about the policy, we ve gotten way more positive than we ve ever gotten negative .
To incentivize vaccination, Scarlet Pearl began paying employees $300 to get fully vaccinated back in March. According to Pappas, it represented an investment of a quarter-million dollars. We re never going to apologize for being concerned about people s safety and well being. There s too much at stake , she stated.
To facilitate the process, the casino partnered with Memorial Hospital. Pappas described it as a "monumental task", as opinions on vaccination efficacy were divided among employees.
Scarlet Pearl has also raised the minimum salary for employees, unless they are in a position where they get tips and come under IRS guidelines.
We just need people to get vaccinated, Pappas said, and Scarlet Pearl is helping make that happen.
She donated $50,000 to kick start a vaccine lottery program created by business leaders in South Mississippi to encourage people to get vaccinated. Scarlet Pearl gave $15,000 for a promotion to get workers at the City of D Iberville the vaccine and another $150,000 for a public promotion for the vaccine.
The casino is a vaccination site, where the public can walk in the front door, go up the escalator or elevator to the second floor and without going into the casino can get a free vaccine.
The loyalty program or players club at Scarlet Pearl Casino Resort is called Pearl Rewards. The Scarlet Pearl Casino Resort Pearl Rewards program has 5 tiers. At most casinos, players can earn points to move to different tiers by playing multiple types of games, including table games and video poker, and at some casinos, you can even move to different tiers by playing keno or bingo.
To progress to higher tiers in Pearl Rewards, players must earn enough qualifying points in a 6 month period. To earn loyalty tier points on a slot machine at Scarlet Pearl Casino Resort, players must cycle through $1.00 dollars per tier point*.
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