Investigation report on casino applications in

Lottery Commission says consultants’ public presentation on Monday

The four-member Lottery Commission received yesterday from its consultants an investigation report on the two applications for an exclusive license to develop an integrated casino resort on Saipan, but there is no telling whether that report would lead to a granting of a license and to whom.

“All I can tell you is that we received the report [Tuesday]. The individual members will then review the report,” Lottery Commission chair Sixto Igisomar said after the commission meeting yesterday afternoon.

Igisomar said the Lottery Commission’s casino investigator B2G Global Strategies and gaming consultant The Innovation Group will be presenting the report on Monday, July 14, at the Pedro P. Tenorio Multi-Purpose Center in Susupe at 2pm.

Marianas Stars Entertainment Inc. and Best Sunshine International Ltd. are the two casino applicants.

The Lottery Commission received the report from its consultants the same day that the House of Representatives passed a bill repealing and reenacting the Saipan casino law in its entirety to clarify ambiguities, including the power of the Lottery Commission to award an exclusive casino license and spend portions of the $1 million application fee paid by each applicants to be used for investigating and reviewing the applications.

Retirees are hopeful that the Lottery Commission will issue a casino license, paving the way for the release of the winning applicant’s $30 million deposit to pay for retirees’ deferred 25 percent pension and to pay for the accrued interest on former defined benefit plan members’ withdrawn contributions.

The report is also received five days after Superior Court Associate Judge Wiseman denied last week an attempt to stop the government from issuing a casino license.

The Saipan casino issue continues to be one of the most divisive revenue-generating measures in the CNMI today.

Haidee V. Eugenio | Reporter
Haidee V. Eugenio has covered politics, immigration, business and a host of other news beats as a longtime journalist in the CNMI, and is a recipient of professional awards and commendations, including the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s environmental achievement award for her environmental reporting. She is a graduate of the University of the Philippines Diliman.

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