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Thread: Are actors a thing of the past in New York?

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  1. Default Are actors a thing of the past in New York? 
    #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Henrietta NY
    Posts
    174
    Hello fellow haunters,
    Just wanted to hear what you have to say about the minimum wage in NYS being increased to $15 an hour by mid 2021.
    Min. wage will increase to $9.75 by the haunt season this year and go up again in 2017 I think to 10.50.
    How would you handle the increases in labor costs over the next few years?
    In Darkness they hunt the livung
    http://www.DarkMatterScreamWorks.com
     

  2. Default Almost to what I pay now 
    #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    820
    I pay corn maze workers $$10 -11 an hour plus FICA, plus a home cooked meal at night for those hear for 8-10 hours on a Sat or Sun.

    Haunted section is about the same per hour but is after dinner hours.

    Don't worry....just raise rates accordingly for tickets in coming years. After all; your customers will all be getting bigger pay checks so they can afford it. Well, except for those who had hours cut for Obamacare. Oh yeah and those who will be phased out of a job when more places put in order kiosks.

    And when the per hour rate gets up to $15 an hour just replace your employees with some $2000 animatronics. The animatronics are depreciable and work out better tax wise than real life bone bags , show up to work on time, never show up drunk, are not hauled away by cops in middle of night for not paying child support, do not need smoke breaks or pee breaks, never ask "Hey can I have the weekend off Oct. 23 & 24th ?"

    Wicked Farmer
     

  3. Default  
    #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Posts
    820
    Quote Originally Posted by wickedfarmer View Post
    IAnd when the per hour rate gets up to $15 an hour just replace your employees with some $2000 animatronics. The animatronics are depreciable and work out better tax wise than real life bone bags , show up to work on time, never show up drunk, are not hauled away by cops in middle of night for not paying child support, do not need smoke breaks or pee breaks, never ask "Hey can I have the weekend off Oct. 23 & 24th ?"

    Wicked Farmer
    ...and cue the backlash now
     

  4. Default  
    #4
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Location
    Henrietta NY
    Posts
    174
    can never replace good actors... don't really like animatronics timing is always an issue. wish we had a few more years under our belt then payroll may not be such an issue.
    In Darkness they hunt the livung
    http://www.DarkMatterScreamWorks.com
     

  5. Default  
    #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Southern Maryland
    Posts
    35
    Depending on your location, accessing a high school or college drama club for actors. Instead of a payroll offer the drama club a donation in exchange for "X" amount of hours and actors for your haunt. Their club gets a donation and the students get class credit. You need to do the math and see what works best for your budget. Any club would be happy with a $500-$1000 donation I'm sure and that cost would be a lot lower then payroll, workmans comp, etc.... Hope this helps, good luck!

    Jack Beckwith
    Twisted Fields Of Terror
    Www.twistedfieldsofterror.com
     

  6. Default Amen to that Farmer 
    #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Location
    Auburndale, FL
    Posts
    178
    Couldn't have said it better myself......as far as volunteers, if you are for profit it will be sketchy based on you state laws and how long you are open per year. Make sure you find out first so you don't have some disgruntled ex volunteer try to turn you in for running sweat shops! And as far as animatronics go, there is an art to the scare...I can make animatronics sing and hit who I want and when I want 90% of the time. Cant time out those runners, still working on that
    Joe Phillips
    The Shallow Grave
    Winter Haven FL
    http://www.theshallowgrave.com/
     

  7. Default  
    #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2003
    Location
    Baltimore, MD
    Posts
    1,520
    If you are a for-profit business you cannot use unpaid labor. Only a registered charity like a registered 501c can use volunteers. Aside from the laws, don't you think your staff works hard and earns their pay?

    Allan
     

  8. Default  
    #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2012
    Posts
    153
    I just got back from Disney World. I went through the Haunted Mansion about 10 times during the week. It was packed attendance the entire time. They have zero scare actors and only animatronics. I never heard a single complaint. Just sayin'.
     

  9. Default  
    #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2011
    Posts
    431
    Quote Originally Posted by mrfoos View Post
    I just got back from Disney World. I went through the Haunted Mansion about 10 times during the week. It was packed attendance the entire time. They have zero scare actors and only animatronics. I never heard a single complaint. Just sayin'.
    That's not really a good example. Disney doesn't charge a separate fee for the haunted mansion and now one expects live actors inside like they do at haunted attractions.

    Jake
     

  10. Default  
    #10
    Join Date
    Aug 2003
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    10,095
    This is a great topic. I'm sorry but the answer is YES! If they raise the wages in STL to $15.00 I will buy twice as many animations and hire half the amount of actors. The only way to avoid this is to simply double your ticket costs and sadly no one would pay it.

    I think the best actors get hired and the loser ones get fired. The new mantra will be the best of the best can work and the rest can buy a ticket.

    You can't pay 100 actors $15.00 an hour just isn't going to happen!!!!

    Larry
     

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