|Casino Non-Refundable Application Fee (Account #7171)||$1,500,000||-||-||-|
|Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands Appropriation (Business Unit: 1545)||-||$1,000||$1,090||$1,090|
|Commonwealth Casino Commission Regulatory Fee (Account #7079A)||-||$3,000,000||$3,000,000||$3,000,000|
|Commonwealth Casino Commission Regulatory Fee (Account #7079A)||-||-||-||$353,783|
|TOTAL ANNUAL FUND||$1,500,000||$3,001,000||$3,001,090||$3,354,873|
The CCC’s initial source of funding derived from the Casino Application Fee. PL 18-56 provides for a One Million Dollar ($1,000,000) non-refundable application fee for those interested in bidding for the exclusive casino license. In mid 2014, two vendors each paid the non-refundable $1 million application fee for the exclusive casino license. The Commonwealth Lottery Commission (CLC), who issued the exclusive license, retained the first million dollars ($1,000,000) to conduct their due diligence on the applicants (Marianas Star Entertainment and Imperial Pacific International (CNMI), LLC)
PL 18-56 authorized and appropriated the other one million dollars to the CCC with the instructions that all funds remaining un-obligated by the CLC shall revert to the CCC with the Chairman of the CCC as the expenditure authority. Thus, based on financial information provided by the Office of Management & Budget, Office of the Governor, the CCC startup budget, as of January 2015, was one million five hundred thousand dollars ($1,500,000) comprising of the other one million dollars ($1,000,000) exclusive application fee and five hundred thousand dollars ($500,000) balance from the amount budgeted to the CLC for the application review, vetting, and awarding of the exclusive casino license.
On December 4, 2015, the CNMI Governor signed into law PL 19-24 (amending PL 18-56) which classified the CCC as an Autonomous Agency with a guaranteed annual funding of Three Million Dollars ($3,000,000) per year assessed on IPI as a Commonwealth Casino Commission Regulatory Fee (CCCRF) Fund. Before the beginning of fiscal year, IPI remitted the Three Million Dollars ($3,000,000) CCCRF Funds to the Department of Finance and deposited under Account Number 7170A for the exclusive use of the CCC. PL 19-24 also authorized the CCC to use all regulatory fees collected to date for the CCC’s personnel and operations budget; these funds have been deposited in Account Number 7171. Through a provision in PL 19-24, the Legislature will appropriate these funds to the CCC on an annual basis.
Enforcement of PL 18-56, PL 19-24, CCC Regulations, and the Casino Minimum Internal Control Standards (MICS) requires a tremendous amount of fiscal resources to hire needed staffing and to provide the necessary training and operational resources for the enforcement and effective and efficient implementation of our mandates.