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Senate to look into NMTI funding needs

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THE Senate will look into the funding needs of the Northern Marianas Technical Institute, Senate Floor Leader Justo Quitugua said.

“We are going to look into that when we start working on the budget,” he said in an interview. “We will see how much we can provide NMTI.”

During the Senate Fiscal Affairs Committee budget hearing last week, NMTI Chief Executive Officer Agnes McPhetres expressed concern about the lack of appropriation for the trade school in the governor’s fiscal year 2021 budget proposal.

She asked the senators why NMTI, a public institution, is not given a budget while a non-government group is appropriated funding.

In his FY 2021 budget submission, Gov. Ralph DLG Torres identified and appropriated $400,000 in CW fees for Latte Academy and $1 million, also in CW fees, for Northern Marianas College.

McPhetres told the senators that NMTI has 300 active students, but  has not recalled its 23 furloughed employees due to lack of funds.

She said NMTI received $450,000 only of the $2.4 million in CW fees that it was supposed to get in FY2020.

For FY2021, McPhetres asked, “Why is it that we, a public institution, have zero budget?”

Quitugua said senators will ask their legal counsel if the Legislature still has the authority to appropriate  CW fees for NMTI.

 

 

 

 

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