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Best of Howard Stutz

Gaming Guru

Howard Stutz

Bill Bible nominated to MGM board

9 March 2010

LAS VEGAS, Nevada -- Nevada Resort Association President Bill Bible has been nominated to become a member of the MGM Mirage Board of Directors and will resign from the trade organization he has headed for more than a decade.

Bible has overseen the resort association, the gaming industry's primary lobbying group, during several peaks and valleys in terms of membership brought about by fractures among the various company executives and leaders.

The organization was established in 1965 and several insiders questioned its future with Bible's departure. Most of the major casino operators employ in-house government affairs and lobbying divisions. Meanwhile, the American Gaming Association is the industry's chief Washington D.C. lobbying organization.

The appointment of Bible, a 27-year state government employee who spent 10 years as the chairman of the Nevada Gaming Control Board, is expected to be ratified at the company's next board meeting and is subject to various regulatory approvals.

"Bill's wealth of expertise and familiarity with a wide range of financial and regulatory matters in both hospitality and gaming will serve as a tremendous asset to our company," MGM Mirage Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jim Murren said in a statement Tuesday.

The nomination comes more than a week after Bible, one of the gaming industry's top lobbyists, participated in the special legislative session in Carson City and played a role in the debate over a potential fee increase to be imposed on the gaming industry.

Bible said the resort association members could not reach consensus for support of a legislative proposal that would have raised $32.5 million in fees the gaming industry pays annually to the state. The funds would have been used to fund the operating budget of the gaming control board.

Bible held various budgetary positions in Nevada government and was the state budget director under Gov. Richard Bryan in the 1980s. In the 1970s, he worked for the administration of Gov. Mike O'Callaghan.

Gov. Bob Miller appointed Bible control board chairman where he oversaw the gaming industry's growth outside of Nevada.

In 1997, Bible was appointed by President Bill Clinton to serve on the National Gambling Impact Study Commission, which spent two years exploring the impact of legalized gambling on American consumers and communities.

Bible fills a spot vacated by former U.S. Secretary of State Alexander Haig, who resigned in October. Haig died Feb. 20.

Bible will join a board that includes, among its members, Los Angeles billionaire and MGM Mirage founder Kirk Kerkorian, former Nevada two-term Gov. Kenny Guinn, former U.S. Secretary of Labor Alexis Herman, former Telemundo CEO Roland Hernandez, and renewable energy proponent Rose McKinney-James.

Murren and CityCenter CEO Bobby Baldwin are the only current day-to-day MGM Mirage executives currently on the board of directors.

Former MGM Mirage president of corporate strategy and general counsel Gary Jacobs, left the board and the company in December. His position has not been filled.

Bill Bible nominated to MGM board is republished from