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Rota council supports 50% pay cut for gaming commissioners

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THE three members of the 17th Rota Municipal Council “strongly support” the proposal to cut the salaries of the Rota Casino Gaming Commission members.

Authored by Rep. Donald M. Manglona, House Local Bill 21-34 would reduce to $30,000 the current $60,000 annual salary of each commissioner.

Manglona noted that every year, Rota spends $300,000 for the compensation of the casino commissioners when there are no active casinos to regulate on island.

This has become a huge financial burden to the municipality, said Manglona, the vice chairman of the Rota Legislative Delegation.

In a joint memorandum, Rota Municipal Council Chairman Anthony Barcinas, Vice Chairwoman Lucia Manglona, and Secretary Simeon Taisacan said the 17th Rota Municipal Council “strongly supports” H.L.B. 21-34.

There are no casino operations in the First Senatorial District, so we agreed to reduce the Rota Casino Gaming Commission members’ compensation from $60,000 to $30,000…. [When there are] active casino operations…then reinstate the original salary,” the council members said.

In the future, the Rota Casino Gaming Commission needs to report to the public as to what is going on with its operation,” they added.

The Rota Gaming Commission is chaired by Viola Hocog Atalig. Its vice chairman is Mateo Apatang Santos and the other commissioners are Lucas Mendiola and Audrielyn Manglona.

Right now, the Rota Casino Gaming Commission stands to receive $100,000 from the Saipan annual casino license fee as appropriated by Public Law 21-10.

Variety was also told that the commission received a $150,000 investigation fee, a $10,000 filing fee and a $5,000 application fee from a prospective casino investor.

An island resident said the people of Rota find it “unfair” that these commissioners who have nothing to regulate are receiving monies that should be spent for services or programs beneficial to all residents of Rota.


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