Possibility of South Pacific Casino
The island of Tinian at one time toward the end of the Second World War played host to the Enola Gay, the American B-29 bomber that dropped the atomic bomb on Hiroshima. These days, it could play host to a casino project if the requested tax breaks from a local developer are approved by the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. Philip Long is a Tinian resident and a local agent for the Bridge Investment Group which would like to build a hotel and casino complex, and he says that under new qualifying certificate programs for such casino projects the company could start construction soon after applying for the certificate.
“We’re not at that stage yet where we can submit an application for a qualifying certificate. But most likely, we’re going to be applying, since it was a major interest among the investors-that the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands was offering tax incentives if they would bring so much hotel and casino related money out here,” Mr. Long said. “Obviously, we would be looking very closely at the qualifying certificate casino program. We don’t want to start a process that’s going to be changed mid-stream. There are some amenities that will be added on to the project if we get a qualifying certificate. Of course, if we are denied a certificate, that would tremendously cut the phase 2 and 3 down. We will just be operating Phase 1, which will be the hotel and casino.”
The Northern Mariana Islands are trying resolutely to increase investment in their island, which is already something of a cult tourist attraction due to its historical role, and the government there has been doing what it can to make Tinian among its most lucrative investment possibilities for casino projects, hotels and upscale resorts. There is no word on who the other possible investors in the island commonwealth would be.