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Baltimore Residents Push For Hiring Priority At Horseshoe Casino

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Harrah's casino downtown
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Pat Warren joined the Eyewitness News team in 1992. Pat came to WJZ...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ)—Gambling downtown.  The new Horseshoe Casino is coming to Baltimore City, and steps have been taken to hire local workers.

Pat Warren explains Baltimore residents will be given priority.

On Wednesday, the Board of Estimates approved the hiring of a job recruitment director who will oversee the community outreach to make sure that they get in touch with Baltimore residents.

While heavy equipment operators were kicking up dust at the site in South Baltimore 10 days ago, casino job hopefuls were raising sand in a public demonstration.

“We’re here today to take back our city,” one demonstrator announced.

They want Baltimore jobs to go to Baltimore residents.

“We’re tired of failed development,” said organizer Roxie Herekian. “Fair development means developers who provide good jobs for Baltimore residents.”

“We help them make their millions,” said city resident Gladys Burrell, “So I’m saying if we are helping you, why can’t you help us?”

In fact, Caesar’s CBAC gaming has already developed a partnership with the city to give hiring priority to city residents, and Wednesday the Board of Estimates approved the hiring of a recruitment coordinator who will be paid by Caesar’s.

“The great thing about that position is it will be focused on making sure we hire as many qualified city residents as possible,” Horseshoe general manager Chad Barnhill tells WJZ.

The Mayor’s Office of Employment Development is overseeing the process.

Karen Sitnick of MOED tells WJZ there will be extensive community outreach.

“To get them aware of what the jobs are, what the skill requirements might be and how to better prepare themselves for the jobs,” she said.

There are 1,700 positions to fill.

The job recruitment director position will be paid for by Caesar’s.

The casino is scheduled to open mid-2014.

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