While in CES, I spoke with a taxi driver and asked him what was it like to actually live and work in Las Vegas. it seems most people come to work here because you can make much more money than other places in the US. Here are a few quotes from this taxi driver:
• He is making roughly $5,000 per month *after taxes* !
• The city grew from 0,5 M inhabitants 10 years ago to more than 2 millions now.
• It is the fastest growing city in the US with over 20,000 newcomers every single month
• Unemployment rate is below 2%, which is well below the natural threshold of around 4 to 5% for economies with no unemployment. They just cant find enough people to fulfill a lot of posiHe told us tions
• "I don't illegal immigrants, but please bring them in as fast as possible, we need them !"
• Some *doorman* can make up to $200,000/year
• Card shuffler typically earn $50 to $75k per year
• They lack a lot of workers in areas such as education because teachers only make $30k per year. They are trying to import teachers from other state but are still missing many. As to why they simply don't increase teacher salary is puzzling...
• The situation in fast food is not very good either (even at $13/hour nobody want to work in fast food, off course they would rather shuffle cards !)
• They regularly blow away old casinos to build new ones
By many aspects this city is fascinating. Last time I visited the city was 15 years ago and I was surprised to realize that it is less tacky than what I thougt. I was staying at the MGM Grand and some restaurants (Joel Robuchon, Guy Savoy) were great. However the thought of living here is terrifying.