29 Aug 2011

CNMI's Senate passes two Saipan casino bills

10:55 am on 29 August 2011

In the Northern Marianas, two Saipan casino bills have been passed by the Senate, a first in the Commonwealth.

The first bill, introduced by the Senate, calls for a special election to allow Saipan voters to decide whether they want to legalise casino gambling on their island.

The special election is to be held within 90 days from the bill's signing into law.

The second bill, by the Saipan and Northern Islands Legislative Delegation seeks to legalise casino gambling on Saipan.

But the legislation involved a lengthy discussion and debate on five floor amendments.

By a vote of 11-5 with one voting "present" and four absences, the bill was passed.

The Senate now awaits House action on the measures.