The Nevada Gaming Commission has slammed Caesars Entertainment’s US$18m bankruptcy plan as ‘embarrassing’ to the company itself and to the state of Nevada and ‘completely perplexing’ during a hearing held last week.
Caesars is hoping to write off billions of debt by juggling its assets and placing its major operating division through Chapter 11 bankruptcy.
During the hearing, which attracted over 200 bankruptcy lawyers, the Commission demanded to know Caesars’ position on missing pension payments as it has stopped making payments worth a total of $33m to 63 retired, former members of staff.
Commission Chairman Dr. Tony Alamo said: “Everyone throws the economy under the bus. This is the largest private bankruptcy this state has ever had. How did we get here? Was this absentee supervision? Was it management? Was it mismanagement?”
Commissioner Randolph Townsend described some the company’s decision making prior to the bankruptcy as ‘completely perplexing.’
“Some of the decisions this company has made over time are completely perplexing. Can you not build anymore Ferris wheels for a while?” he asked, referencing the High Roller attraction opened at the Linq.
Commissioner John Moran added: “It’s one of those kinds of sandwiches that nobody wants to take a bite out of. It’s very distasteful, and it’s very embarrassing for the corporation to have to go through this.”
Caesars described the Chapter 11 filing as ‘the largest and most complex bankruptcy in a generation,’ adding that the 63 pension schemes in doubt were agreed by companies that were then bought by Harrah’s Entertainment before it became Caesars Entertainment in 2010.
“These were part of a hodgepodge of acquisition liabilities,” a spokesperson said.