Guam News - Guam News
Guam - The Guam Election Commission (GEC) on Monday voted to place the for-profit bingo initiative on the November ballot, but GEC does not now have enough money to place it on the ballot.
The board approval was expected after GEC Executive Director Maria Pangelinan said last Wednesday that her staff had verified the 4,713 signatures that the backers of the commercial bingo initiative needed. [That number represents 10% of the registered voters on island.]
Bingo is already legal for non-profit organizations on Guam. But this initiative seeks approval for a commercial Bingo operation to do business at the old Greyhound Racing Track in Tamuning which shut down 2 years ago.
Although the intiative is now approved for placement on the ballot, Pangelinan says the estimated cost of of doing that exceeds GEC's current $250 thousand dollar budget, which must pay for the entire General Election.
Before the meeting, Pangelinan told PNC, “after the certification comes the legal counsel's work to put together a ballot title."
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“After the ballot title is put together, then we will publish, 3 weeks in a row, the ballot title" said Pangelinan.
She also says the opponents of the bingo initiative can submit their objections to placing it on the ballot up to 45 days prior to the Geeneral Election.
The initiative was submitted to the GEC this past May by Annette M. Cruz of Tamuning on behalf of an organization dubbed the "Guam Japan Friendship Village."
Previously, Cruz filed initiatives to legalize gambling on behalf of Bridge Capital which holds a long term lease on the now abandoned Guam Greyhound property, which is owned by Perez Brothers.
A Bridge Capital backed legalized gambling initiative was last on the Guam election ballot in 2008. It was soundly defeated. Bridge Capital is co-owned by Shawn Scott and John Baldwin.
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