Casino Com­mis­sion wants ex­pat as CEO

Jamaica Gleaner - - BUSINESS - Steven.jack­son@glean­erjm.com

THE CASINO Gam­ing Com­mis­sion (CGC) ex­pressed dis­ap­point­ment at the rel­a­tively quick exit of its ex­pa­tri­ate CEO and sec­ond, that both en­ti­ties is­sued or­ders to op­er­ate re­sort casi­nos are yet to break ground, in its newly re­leased an­nual re­port.

The com­mis­sion ex­pressed a de­sire to re­cruit an­other CEO from over­seas. The po­si­tion pays around $17.2 mil­lion, ac­cord­ing to fi­nan­cial dis­clo­sures for the 2015/16 fis­cal pe­riod.

Cur­rently, the casino com­mis­sion’s gen­eral coun­sel, Au­drey Robinson, holds the re­mit as act­ing CEO.

“The ma­jor dis­ap­point­ments were that al­though or­ders for Ap­proved In­te­grated Re­sort De­vel­op­ment have been made to two ap­pli­cants, fur­ther progress has not been made in achiev­ing the break­ing of ground and the con­struc­tion of the re­sorts,” stated CGC chair­man Wal­ter Scott in the an­nual re­port.

The two are Cel­e­bra­tion Ja­maica De­vel­op­ment Lim­ited and Har­mony Cove Lim­ited.

The CGC’s chief ex­ec­u­tive held the po­si­tion for a year. Phillip Shel­ton was a former gam­ing reg­u­la­tor from Vic­to­ria, Aus­tralia with 29 years of ex­pe­ri­ence in the in­dus­try. Shel­ton’s res­ig­na­tion took ef­fect in April, and Robinson was asked to act in the po­si­tion un­til a re­place­ment was found. Wal­ter Scott, chair­man of the Casino Gam­ing Com­mis­sion.

“Mr Shel­ton brought a great deal of knowl­edge and ca­pac­ity to the or­gan­i­sa­tion and will be missed,” said Scott.

BEST FOR PO­SI­TION

The CGC views an ex­pa­tri­ate as best for the po­si­tion of CEO, based on in­ter­na­tional casino ex­pe­ri­ence. The CEO po­si­tion paid a base salary of $13.8 mil­lion, other al­lowances of $3.2 mil­lion and trav­el­ing of $120,000 – to­talling $17.2 mil­lion, ac­cord­ing to the an­nual re­port.

“It is in the com­mis­sion’s best in­ter­est to re­cruit a CEO from

the in­ter­na­tional mar­ket. By so do­ing, it is likely to at­tract those per­sons with the req­ui­site skills, knowl­edge and ex­per­tise to guide the op­er­a­tional frame­work, es­tab­lish best prac­tices and build in­dus­try knowl­edge,” the CGC said.

Scott said that on bal­ance the CGC had a solid year and laid the foun­da­tion for an ef­fec­tive reg­u­la­tion of the in­dus­try, “once it gets go­ing”.

Shel­ton in his CEO mes­sage de­scribed his res­ig­na­tion with re­gret and in­di­cated that he would re­turn to Aus­tralia.

“The past year has seen sig­nif­i­cant progress in estab­lish­ing the reg­u­la­tory frame­work for the mon­i­tor­ing and con­trol of casi­nos in Ja­maica which con­form to in­ter­na­tional best prac­tice. Draft­ing of the nec­es­sary reg­u­la­tions has con­tin­ued and they pro­vide the foun­da­tion for a ro­bust reg­u­la­tory frame­work,” Shel­ton said in his CEO mes­sage.

The CGC set up in 2010 un­der the Casino Gam­ing Act is a statu­tory self-reg­u­la­tory body gov­erned by a board of com­mis­sion­ers which meets monthly.

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