House OKs bill to make casino commission an enforcement agency

THE House of Representatives on Friday passed a bill that aims to make the Commonwealth Casino Commission an enforcement agency.

Introduced by Rep. Joseph Deleon Guerrero, House Bill 20-82 will clarify the powers of the casino commission and make “needed changes to the Commonwealth Code given the unique regulatory oversight of the casino industry in the Commonwealth.”

All 20 House members voted yes to pass the measure which now goes to the Senate.

The casino commission supports the bill and is hoping that the Senate will also act favorably on H.B. 20-82.

In an interview, Commonwealth Casino Commission Executive Director Edward Deleon Guerrero said the bill will “classify the commission as an enforcement agency and strengthen a bit the powers of the commissioners.”

Under the bill, it is the casino commission and no longer the secretary of Finance who “shall establish and maintain a Regulatory Fee Fund to be kept separate and apart from the general fund of the CNMI government.”

The bill stated that fees pertaining to the application, investigation, regulatory, renewal and licenses fees must be deposit to the Regulatory Fee Fund and to be expended by the commission for its operation, personnel and other expenses.

Source: Marianas Variety :

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