Over 4,500 signatures were reviewed by the Guam Election Commission according to the director of the GEC, Maria Pangelinan. The advocates of the for-profit Bingo initiative, the Guam Japan Friendship Village hope to legalize for-profit Bingo and open a Bingo facility at the former Greyhound facility in Tamuning. After the signatures are certified by the commission, a ballot title must be presented and certified 90 days prior to the election in November. Many people are in favor of the initiative.
Legalizing Bingo in Guam – Due Process
Maria Pangelinan, GEC director, was not at liberty to determine at this point whether or not the Bingo initiative will make it onto the November election ballot. She was able to speak in general as to the process that must ensue now that the signatures on the petitions have been reviewed. Following certification, a ballot title must be assigned and the initiative must be certified 90 days prior to the November election. In the event that there are arguments to be made for, as well as against, the Bingo initiative then a brochure will be mailed to all voters describing both sides of the initiative. The commission’s legal counsel will prepare a timeline and validate the initiative to include it in the election.
Hard Work May See Bingo Initiative Through
Pangelinan expressed enthusiasm about being a part of this process to get the Bingo initiative on the election ballots. She said that reviewing the 4,713 signatures was no easy task but that it is a way for the people to voice their opinion and desire in the matter. The initiative, submitted by the Guam Friendship Japan Friendship Village in May would ultimately legalize for-profit Bingo in Tamuning and allow them to proceed with plans of turning the old Greyhound facility into a Bingo Hall.
The number of signatures received by the GEC represents at least 10% of the registered voters so the deal is essentially in the ‘hands’ of the legal counsel. Once a timeline is prepared, says Pangelinan, “we’ll go from there”. The bottom line is that the Bingo initiative is one formal step closer to reality and the possibility of legal Bingo in Guam could be as close as this November. Clearly many people are in favor of the initiative and Pangelinan feels that if that many people are in favor of the initiative then it should move forward.