Nevada Gov. Steve Sisolak on Tuesday ordered the temporary closure of casinos and other nonessential businesses amid the coronavirus spread, after three major gambling operators voluntarily shut down over public-health concerns.
Las Vegas-based Wynn Resorts Ltd., MGM Resorts International and Las Vegas Sands Corp. in recent days said they would close their casinos on the Strip and across the U.S. in response to pandemic. State officials in New Jersey, New York and other states with commercial casinos have already ordered gambling outlets to close.
Gov. Sisolak’s order Tuesday means the Strip casinos owned by Caesars Entertainment Corp. as well as all other casinos in Las Vegas and the smaller gambling hub of Reno will be shuttered. Other nonessential businesses being temporarily closed under the order include fitness centers and bars. Restaurants will be limited to take-out and delivery, the governor said. Groceries, pharmacies, banks, gas stations and hardware stores will be allowed to remain open.
Several casino employees and hotel guests on the Strip tested positive for the novel coronavirus last week. Business for casinos and the larger global travel industry has evaporated with mandatory business closures, travel restrictions and public-health warnings for people to stay at home.
The previously announced closures have resulted in tens of thousands of workers being laid off and an uncertain future for the greater Las Vegas economy that depends on tourism and gambling.