License fee jeopardises gaming in Puerto Rico

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Business outlays in Puerto Rico could jeopardise gaming industry’s profitability.

Puerto Rico.- Casino operators in Puerto Rico presented a joint complaint against a potential rise on licensing fees. According to local press, the slot licenses in the country could grow 2,900 percent under the new gaming legislation. Companies have warned the government the move could cost 9k job positions.

“The increase included in the project will be impossible to satisfy,” Anibal Villafañe, Slots’ Operating Coordinator in Puerto Rico reportedly stated to G3 Newswire. “The expected projections following the approval of the project are false, ridiculous and out of all budgetary realities.”

The House Bill 1142 could increase slot license fees from US$100 to US$3k in order to rise the state’s funds to over US$80 million a year. Villafañe added that the proposal is “not in line with the economic situation of Puerto Rico” and is “another attempt to harm our entertainment machine industry,” as reported by World Casino Directory.

Casino operators filled the complaint with The Financial Oversight and Management Board for Puerto Rico, which would evaluate the petition. According to Villafañe, the gaming proposal was introduced twice in the last 60 days by recently-elected Governor Ricardo Rossello. The representative of gaming companies also added that the bill contains “serious errors and excessive increases.”