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House panel to discuss governor’s version of resolution on military training

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HOUSE Committee on Federal and Foreign Affairs Chairman Luis John Castro has invited Gov. Ralph DLG Torres to a meeting on Friday to discuss the chief executive’s proposed version of House Joint Resolution 21-8, which expresses the CNMI government stance on military training in the Commonwealth.

In his letter to the governor, Castro said “with issues surrounding the passage of the budget and each of us attending to matters both office-related and personal,” his committee has not yet decided on the governor’s proposed version of H.J.R. 21-8.

The committee’s final version of the resolution authored by Rep. Sheila Babauta states that the 21st Legislature is “supporting” the governor “in his continued opposition to any increase in destructive military training and testing in the NMI.”

But the governor has recommended that the resolution be revised to state, “To acknowledge and support the Honorable Governor Ralph Deleon Guerrero Torres in his continued efforts to ensuring adequate protection for the natural resources, economy, culture, environment, and health and quality of life in the Northern Mariana Islands related to expanded military activities in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands.”

The governor sent his proposed revision to the committee on Sept. 21, 2020.

In response to the Torres’ follow-up letter last week, Castro said he has scheduled a meeting for Friday, Oct. 23, 2020 at 10 a.m. in the House chamber to discuss the H.J.R. 21-8 version proposed by the governor.

“I am extending an invitation for you to meet with the members to discuss this version as its contents are different from the substitute we previously adopted. Any feedback from you and/or your designated representative/s will be appreciated during this dialogue,” Castro told the governor.

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