FREEPORT, Grand Bahama, The Bahamas – Grand Bahamians were on Friday urged to take advantage of the three hotel/casino licenses that currently exist for the island, by Executive Chairman of the Gaming Board Dr. Daniel Johnson.
Dr. Johnson issued this challenge during the 100 Years of Gaming celebration held under the theme, “Bet on The Bahamas!” The celebration also took in the opening of the Gaming Board’s new office on Settler’s Way.
“The mandate of this new board is very clear. We are in a rebrand, renew, rebuild, phase.” He continued, “This is now the time go for it.
“You all have three gaming licenses for hotel and casino on Grand Bahama. We (Gaming Board) haven’t gotten a penny from those hotel and casino licenses in almost 20 years. That’s what I’m coming for.”
By the end of the year, the Executive Chairman stated, one license will be issued. And by next year he would like to issue a license to a Bahamian group in Grand Bahama. Additionally, Bahamian-owned boutique hotels throughout the Family Islands will be issued gaming licenses.
Over the past 55 years, Orlando, Nevada, and Nassau were the gaming giants of the entertainment industry. Today, Nevada welcomes 50 million visitors per year, Orlando welcomes over 40 million visitors per year and in Nassau welcomes five to seven million visitors.
The Bahamas is in a tropical paradise, he said: “and I come here to say today, we want this business back and we coming to get it. I issuing that license this year.” Also present was Minister for Grand Bahama, the Hon. Ginger Moxey who congratulated the Gaming Board on the opening of their new offices and added that gaming continues to make a meaningful contribution to the economy of the country under the “watchful eye of the Gaming Board.”
The Minister requested that the Gaming Board “execute the social responsibility aspect of the Board as a priority agenda item.” She urged that they become a part of Collab: Partnerships for Development, a unit formed in the Ministry for Grand Bahama. “There’s so much that we can do together that will allow our people to live in dignity again if we join hands and work together,” the Minister said.