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  • By Pacific island Times News Staff

Yap facing government shutdown due to lack of budget law

Yap Gov. Henry Falan

Colonia, Yap -- The Yap government is facing a possible shutdown due to the lack of appropriation for government operations, according to Gov. Henry Falan.

As of Sept. 30, the state was still without both an appropriation law and a continuing resolution to authorize the government to continue funding its operations into fiscal year 2021 which began on Oct. 1, Falan said in a letter to Speaker Vincent Figir of the Yap State Legislature.

The governor earlier sent a resolution that allocates the Compact fund, but no action has been taken since the resolution was received by the legislature on Sept. 11. Falan also noted in his letter that the fiscal year 2021 local revenue fund has also not yet been appropriated or authorized. According to the Financial Management Act, with no appropriation of these funds by the Legislature, there is the possibility of needing to shut down the government except for essential services such as public safety to maintain peace and order, and certain divisions of the Department of Health Services to ensure the performance of essential services are not disrupted.

Falan stated in his letter to Figir that, if his administration determines by the end of day Sept. 30 that a shutdown is necessary, there is no legal authority to obligate government spending and for government services to continue. In the event that is necessary, Falan will notify the Legislature and the other two branches of government when the shutdown will become effective and when it will be lifted once an appropriation is passed by the Legislature. “It is my hope that our two branches of government take this issue seriously as our people’s lives, welfare and securities will be affected” in the event government services are shut down," the governor wrote. An update will be forthcoming from the Office of the Governor pending a response from the legislature.

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