The Northern Mariana Islands could approve new legislations for casino industry, operated by Imperial Pacific.
Northern Mariana Islands.- Legislators of Northern Mariana Islands are evaluating two proposals to further regulate the casino industry, currently only operated by Imperial Pacific casino. The Congress approved this week two different proposals related to the gaming industry in order to determine the authority of Commonwealth Casino Commission (CCC).
Furthermore, the bills would also be focused on “the penalties for casino industry-related violations.” The current maximum penalty is set on US$50k imposed on violators, however officials consider it to be still too low. Both proposals were reviewed and passed by the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) this week.
“Whilst a fine of that magnitude could be devastating in other industries, such a fine is a pittance when one considers that the casino regularly takes…bets of over 10 times that amount. In short, a US$50k fine could represent less than the revenue the casino wins on one single bet. As such, that amount is in no way sufficient to serve as a deterrent to improper conduct,” Propst’s bill stated.
“We changed the amount from $5 million to $800k. The current law is $50k but that $50k is not cumulative. We propose to make it $800k. It doesn’t mean that it’s only $800k — there are smaller fines for lesser offenses, but for severe offenses it will be $800k per violation,” Rep. Joseph Deleon Guerrero said. “If this bill becomes law, it should act as a deterrent, but the biggest deterrent would still be suspension or revocation of the license.”