Victoryland employees wait for good news about jobs

Posted by: Melissa McKinney - bio | email

TUSKEGEE, AL (WSFA) - Ask most people in line at the Macon County courthouse what the future holds and you'll get a similar response.

"I've been looking for a job, because I can't depend on the next paycheck because we might not ever see one," says Victoryland employee Patricia Robinson.

By 8:00am Saturday morning Victoryland employees filled the courthouse, anxious for their paychecks--hoping their time in the line ends up paying off at least for a few more days.

"It means my light bill, my water bill, and my rent.  After that I'm broke," says Robinson.

But for the Gantt family, a few more days would be a blessing.

"It'll be probably end of the day, and that'll be gone," says Sarah Gantt, referring to her husband's paycheck.

With their son Sam, money goes fast--leaving them wondering how to provide.

"He's gotta find a job now. That's the next step. If nothing happens before Monday, we've gotta find another job," adds Sarah.

As folks filed in and out of the courthouse doors picking up what could be their last paycheck, many who are frustrated and worried about the future say one thing is making all the difference.

"We're all family. Ya know, families might fight and fuss, but you better not say nothing against one of them.  We're all family," says employee Charlie McDill.

But perhaps there was some reassurance when Victoryland owner Milton McGregor stopped by the courthouse in support of his employees.

"They're absolutely going to get their job back," he said.

McGregor promised they will all be back under the same roof...some day.

"I can assure you, they will return to work.  And Victoryland will be bigger and better than ever before," he says.

But even for McGregor, the future is unclear.

"As soon as we know some real details as far as the timing and so forth, we'll tell them [employees] the minute we know," he says.

For employees, the waiting game continues with no clear end in sight.

"All we can do is wait and see," says Robinson.

Victoryland isn't the only gaming center that closed its doors.

14 electronic bingo casinos in Jefferson County and one in Blount County are closed.

The commander of the Governor's task force on illegal gambling released a statement today. He praised local law enforcement and asked nearby Greenetrack to close its electronic bingo casino.

But the sheriff of Greene County warned the task force not to attempt to shut down Greenetrack.

Macon County leaders are planning a meeting Monday, February 8th to discuss Victoryland's future.

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