Casino Control Commission Chair Makes Herself a One-Person Tropicana Audit Committee

December 19, 2009 – In The News
Press of Atlantic City

Two years ago, the Casino Control Commission pulled Tropicana’s gaming license, giving rise to a complaint for the lack of an appointed independent audit committee. In response, Commission Chair Linda Kassekert has appointed herself the casino’s audit committee, even though no such authorization to do so exists in casino law.

New role for state

Nicholas Casiello said that in the absence of Casino Control Act language addressing possible service by a commission member on or as an independent audit committee, Kassekert’s service seems to be what’s known in law as a case of first impression — an interpretation of law that has never arisen before.

“There has never been a situation like this before in the history of Atlantic City, and when there is no precedent and no clear guidance in the statute, regulators have the discretion to implement the policies of the act in the manner in which they see fit,” Casiello said.

A conflict loophole

Conflict of interests can arise when former Division of Gaming Enforcement and casino commission employees work in the gaming industry, which is why state law requires two years before these employees can enter into the gaming industry.

Casiello said that except for a secretary, no one leaving the Division of Gaming Enforcement or Casino Control Commission could work for a casino for two years.

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