Marianas Senate raises gaming machine fees

 

The Northern Marianas Senate passed its own version of a bill to legalize electronic table games at Saipan hotels with at least 100 rooms or an attached golf course, which will go to the House for it to consider the changes to the version it passed. The two versions differ on the allocation of tax proceeds and licensing fees. The Senate version sets the annual fee per electronic gaming machine at $12,500 or 10 percent of net proceeds, matching the level set under the US islands’ law for “poker machines”. The House bill put the fee for each electronic gaming machine at $2,500 or 10 percent of net proceeds. Saipan Senator Pete Reyes said $5,000 would be a good compromise level as $10,000 is likely to deter investors. The Senate is still to consider a bill passed by the House to legalize casino gambling on Saipan.