OPPOSITION TO CASINOS IN SAIPAN

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By Nick Legaspi

SAIPAN, Northern Mariana Islands (December 29, 1998 - CNMI News On-Line)---The Hotel Association of the Northern Mariana Islands (HANMI) has rejected a proposal to establish casinos on the island of Saipan.

Members of the association expressed their opposition to the proposal during a recently completed survey.

In an interview yesterday HANMI President Ronald D. Sablan said that the majority of the association members were concerned that casinos would bring undesirable groups to the island.

In addition, hotel executives who responded to the survey were concerned about hurting the political relationship between Saipan and Tinian, which hosts the only casino in the Commonwealth.

"It's more of political concerns and social concerns and most of them are aware of what the industry would bring so they don't really agree that it should be here," Sablan said. "It has been approved by the people of Tinian so it should be left down there."

©1998 CNMI News On-Line, Northern Mariana Islands For more information call Nick Legaspi or Lewy Tenorio at TEL: (670) 234-7239 http://www.itecnmi.com/news/

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