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Governor OKs bill to reappropriate $150K for Rota

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GOVERNOR Ralph DLG Torres on Tuesday approved House Bill 21-103 to reappropriate $150,000 in special casino gross revenue tax for Rota projects.

Authored by Rep. Donald Manglona, H.B. 21-103 is now Public Law 21-103. It originally proposed to appropriate $150,000 in special casino GRT for the renovation of Rota Pinatang Beach Park. The money is a portion of the $15 million in special casino GRT paid by Imperial Pacific International that was made available in June 2018 for various projects and programs on Saipan, Tinian and Rota.

In an interview, Manglona said the renovation of Rota Pinatang Beach Park did not materialize due to a dispute over land ownership of the park. So the $150,000 casino tax for that project was never used.

According to H.B. 21-103, certain areas on Rota are in dire need of renovation. These facilities have “structural and wastewater deficiencies that are hazardous to the well-being of all who are within the vicinities so it is imperative to rectify such inadequacies and provide much needed remedies in order to better protect our citizens from any unfortunate situations that may arise.”

The bill added, “The safety of our constituents is the highest priority that must be taken seriously without compromising the betterment of the CNMI, especially within the First Senatorial District.”

The new law allots $135,000 for the renovation of the Rota Roundhouse and $15,000 for the sewer renovation at the Rota patients’ guest house on Navy Hill, Saipan.

The expenditure authority of the funds will lie with the Rota mayor.

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