Casino Notebook: Gtech Slashes Jobs and Will Sell Unit

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Quick end-of-the-week casino notes:

Lottery operator

Gtech

(GTK:NYSE) said Friday it would sell an underperforming subsidiary and cut 800 jobs, or 16% of its worldwide workforce.

Gtech said it would sell

Transactive

, which provides electronic benefits transfer services for welfare recipients, to

Citicorp

(CCI:NYSE) for $11.5 million. Transactive, which has little in common with Gtech's core business of running lotteries, was costing the company 10 to 15 cents per share annually, analysts say.

The job cuts and asset sale will cause Gtech to take a one-time charge of about $100 million, or $1.45 per share, the company said. Still, investors liked the news. The company touched a 52-week high of 35 3/4 before closing at 35 1/2, up 3/8.

* * *

Donald Trump

has opened yet another legal front in his never-ending war to keep

Mirage Resorts

(MIR:NYSE) from coming to Atlantic City. The Donald, displaying a newfound concern for the environment, has asked the

Army Corps of Engineers

to slow its review of the $330 million tunnel that will connect the Atlantic City Expressway with the Mirage project.

The tunnel will have "immense environmental impacts,"

Trump Hotels & Casino Resorts

(DJT:NYSE) argued in a 33-parge letter to the Corps, saying that each of the six federal permits that the agency must grant for the project should be considered separately. Mirage and the state of New Jersey, which are sharing the costs of the tunnel, want the Corps to issue a blanket permit that would allow construction to start later this year.

* * *

Just when you thought Las Vegas couldn't get any more overbuilt...

Privately held

Aladdin Gaming

announced that it has completed a $115 million debt offering and $410 million bank loan that will enable it to begin construction of a $1.3 billion casino-hotel and mall on the

Las Vegas Strip

. Construction will begin on the project's centerpiece, an $826 million, 2,600-room hotel with a 100,000-square-foot casino, as soon as the current Aladdin is blown up. The project should be completed in early 2000 -- just after the other 14,000 rooms that are already under construction.