Well, as you may have surmised by now, this was not an easy question to answer.
While most of the coins end up with charity, they have to go through a major cleaning process. Some are simply too dirty or damaged to salvage and are destroyed.
The Mirage has in the past given the coins from the water feature near the people mover along the Strip to Shriner’s and Red Cross. They did not have an amount; they simply gave away the coins. My contact there said it was difficult to find an agency to take the coins because they had to be cleaned first.
Bellagio gives coins from their front feature to Habitat for Humanity, however our contact at HFH is saying the company that cleans the coins charges them 50%. As I recall a past conversation Bellagio, the Red Cross asked us to stop giving them the coins about a year ago, because the company they were using to process the donations, was going to raise their fee.
In 2007 approximately $22,000 was given to Make-a-Wish of Southern Nevada from the water features at New York New York.
Mandalay Bay and Luxor give theirs back to Voice, our company’s Foundation, where the monies are disbursed to charities throughout southern Nevada under the direction of a board made up entirely of employees. Last year, we deposited more than $33,000 into the Voice account from the fountains at these properties.
I know this isn’t a detailed accounting, but it’s what I was able to pull together in between calls on the fire and economy slipping into recession.
Any thoughts, folks?