VIDEO: Language in Saipan Casino Bill Would Eliminate Tax Rebates for All But Casino License Holder

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Saipan  – Whether intentional or not, the Saipan casino bill that recently passed the Legislature and headed to the desk of Gov. Eloy Inos has language scrapping the tax rebate for everyone in the CNMI except for the exclusive Saipan casino license holder.

The Saipan Tribune reports that the bill leaves out the tax relief provision specific to the tiered rebate offset amount. Under current law, for instance, taxpayers with $20,000 or less in rebate base gets a rebate of 90 percent of the base amount.

 

Saipan Chamber of Commerce president Alex Sablan said the tax rebate is one of the last real investment tools to attract investors in the CNMI.

Sen. Paul Manglona, one of the four senators who voted “no” to the bill on Tuesday night, is also on quandary and asked whether the Saipan casino bill indeed will wipe put tax rebates.

Asked for comment about the issue, press secretary Angel Demapan said the Inos administration does not want to scrap the tax rebate program.

DUE TO LANGUAGE OF SAIPAN CASINO BILL
‘Tax rebate could be scrapped’
Chamber of Commerce, citizens, officials raise more questions

Private citizens, elected officials, and businesses weighed in yesterday on what they describe as a hastily-passed bill allowing casino gaming on Saipan, including scrapping the tax rebate for everyone in the CNMI except for the exclusive Saipan casino license holder. Whether it was plain oversight or not, community members are asking Gov. Eloy S. Inos to carefully consider this and other concerns in deciding the bill’s fate.

The bill, which has yet to be transmitted by the House of Representatives to the governor’s office as of yesterday afternoon, leaves out the tax relief provision specific to the tiered rebate offset amount.

Under current law, for example, taxpayers with $20,000 or less in rebate base gets a rebate of 90 percent of the base amount.