November 5, 2020

Saipan— Coral reefs in the Northern Mariana Islands have taken a hit. Bleaching, global warming and anthropogenic stressors such as debris in the ocean are the biggest contributors to the degradation of corals in the CNMI.

“We have been monitoring the challenges that our coral reefs experience, what they are going through and we have come up with priorities and plans for the next 10 years,” said David Benavente, a marine biologist who leads the marine monitoring program under the CNMI Coastal Res...

Saipan-- The CNMI government confirmed two additional individuals have been confirmed positive for Covid-19. This brings our CNMI total to 88 cases since March 28.

The individuals were identified by travel screening and confirmed diagnosis through fifth day testing.

The individuals have been safely in quarantine and were moved to the designated isolation area for close monitoring.

The CHCC has already initiated contact tracing for the most immediate contacts of the new confirmed cases, includi...

August 6, 2020

Saipan— In mid-July, the U.S. Citizenship Immigration Services announced possible furloughs and closure of some of its field offices due to the Covid-19 pandemic and a significant decrease in visa applications and processes. Both factors resulted in a revenue decline for this fee-funded agency, which reported a $571 million year-end deficit. USCIS has requested the U.S.  Congress for a $1.2 billion emergency appropriation.

More than the financial malaise of the USCIS, the focus should be on the p...

March 30, 2020

 As part of the social distancing policy, non-essential business on Guam remain close until April 13, leaving many employees underemployed. Photo by Mar-Vic Cagurangan

The disaster unemployment assistance related to job cuts and furloughs resulting from Covid-19 pandemic will be retroactive to Jan. 27 and will last for 39 weeks, according to Guam Labor Director  Dave Dell’lsola.

Dell’lsola estimated about 2,400 displaced workers and 1,300 reduced hours. "This isn’t including the hotel in...

December 20, 2019

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The federal year-end spending bill, which President Trump is expected to sign soon, includes a provision that authorizes 3,000 more CW workers to pick up typhoon recovery work and to prepare for future storms in the Marianas.

The workers can be recruited from any country on the Department of Homeland Security’s approved list for 2018, which includes the Philip...

December 18, 2019

Territorial leaders says bill will avert Medicaid 'cliff'

President Trump is expected to sign into law this week a federal spending bill that increases Medicaid funding for U.S. insular areas

and raises the federal share to 83 percent.

Territorial leaders welcomed the U.S House of Representatives’ passage of  Further Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2020, which would give Guam $127 million and the CNMI, $120 million in Medicaid until September 2021. American Samoa is expected to lock in a new inc...

Washington D.C. – Medicaid funding for Northern Marianas will increase to $60 million both this year and next and  the federal share for Medicaid will go from 55 percent to 83 percent, Congressman Gregorio Kilili Sablan said Tuesday.

The Marianas is currently getting $6.9 million, Sablan said, adding that the new federal/-local contribution rate is better than for any U.S. state.

“This is good news for the 15,000 plus people in the Marianas who have Medicaid for their health insuran...

October 2, 2019

If not giving birth or working at construction sites, illegal aliens are driving cabs on Saipan

                                             An aerial photograph of tourists on a sand bar in front of the Hyatt Regency hotel on Saipan.

 Chunxiao Chen, a citizen of China, was pulled over by police patrol for traffic violation earlier this year. She was later found to be in possession a fake...

July 7, 2019

 Saipan — When it comes to politics and the government, many us believe that what’s happening now should be the worst thing ever. Not a lot of us care for history, and what we can’t Google probably never happened anyway.  

In the NMI’s case, some of us believe that its history consisted of Spaniards hundreds of years ago; a war 75 years ago; garment factories and Jack Abramoff in the 1990s followed by the website Saipan Sucks created by a disgruntled former assistant attorney general af...

The CNMI has received $8.7 million in federal grants to help the typhon-ravaged commonwealth rebuild.

“The partnership we have had with Assistant Secretary Doug Domenech and the Office of Insular Affairs over the last few years has been a fruitful one, and this award is just another product of our work for the benefit of the Marianas,” CNMI Gov. Ralph Torres said.

“We worked collaboratively on the funding of our priorities by sharing our critical needs, which include funding for our local cost sha...

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