28 Jun 2011

CNMI lawmaker wants to give Saipan casino revenue to Fund

10:35 am on 28 June 2011

A lawmaker in the Northern Mariana Islands is wanting to amend a controversial bill seeking to legalise casino gambling on Saipan.

Representative Froilan Tenorio, a former governor and speaker, shared his proposal to amend Representative Stanley Torres' House Local Bill during a House leadership meeting yesterday.

Mr Tenorio says his proposal will give all business gross revenue tax earnings from the Saipan casino industry to cover the CNMI Retirement Fund's unfunded liability.

He says he does not want taxpayers to be burdened with paying for the government's pension program, saying it can be covered by having the casino industry pay for the Fund's unfunded liability.

The CNMI Retirement Fund's accrued unfunded liability was at 619.7 million US dollars from February the 28th, meaning for every dollar the Fund owes its beneficiaries, only about 36 cents is funded.