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COVENANT TAKES SPECIAL NOTE OF THIS, AND CONSEQUENTLY WE HAVE OUR

OWN TAX SYSTEM, CONTROL OUR OWN IMMIGRATION.

WE HAVE A BICAMERAL

LEGISLATURE SO OUR ISLANDS CAN SHARE LAWMAKING AUTHORITY IN THE

COMMONWEALTH SENATE.

ONLY CERTAIN PROVISIONS OF THE U.S.

CONSTITUTION, STATUTES AND ADMINISTRATIVE REGULATIONS HAVE EFFECT

IN THE CNMI ONLY BECAUSE OUR PEOPLE VOLUNTARILY CONSENTED TO

THEIR APPLICATION THROUGH THE COVENANT.

IN A SIMILAR MANNER, THE

TERRITORIAL CLAUSE OF THE U.S. CONSTITUTION WAS NOT INTENDED TO

APPLY IN THE NORTHERN MARIANA ISLANDS.

WE ARE, THEREFORE, VERY CONCERNED OVER HOW THE DEPARTMENT OF

THE INTERIOR, OTHER FEDERAL AGENCIES, AND FEDERAL COURTS ARE

INTERPRETING THE POLITICAL SOVEREIGNTY OF OUR ISLANDS PURSUANT TO

THE COVENANT.

WE ARE VERY CONCERNED ABOUT THE PROLIFERATION OF

U.S. STATUTES THAT FEDERAL AGENCIES AND THE U.S. CONGRESS HAS

ATTEMPTED TO APPLY IN THE

COMMONWEALTH, WHICH ARE CONTRARY TO

OUR RIGHT TO FULL INTERNAL SELF-GOVERNMENT.

THE COVENANT NEVER INTENDED FOR THE UNITED STATES TO BECOME

INVOLVED IN MATTERS OF STRICTLY LOCAL CONCERN.

WHEN WE ENTERED

INTO NEGOTIATIONS WITH THE UNITED STATES, WE DID SO AS AN EQUAL

BARGAINING PARTNER.

OUR POLITICAL SOVEREIGNTY WAS STILL INTACT.

TWO SOVEREIGN PEOPLES SAT ACROSS FROM ONE ANOTHER AT THE

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IMMUNITY FROM THE U.S. CONSTITUTION'S 11TH AMENDMENT, AS THE

9TH CIRCUIT COURT NOW INSISTS IS OUR CASE TODAY.

SOVEREIGN

PEOPLE HAVE IMMUNITY TO FEDERAL SUIT AS A MATTER OF COMMON LAW

RIGHT.

THE SOVEREIGNTY OF THE PEOPLE OF THE NORTHERN MARIANAS

CANNOT BE RELEGATED TO THE SECOND CLASS STATUS OF A COUNTY

GOVERNMENT.

RELATED FINANCIAL ISSUBS

THE INTEGRITY OF THE COVENANT RELATES DIRECTLY TO THE BUDGET

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HAVE TRIED TO KEEP UP WITH THE RAPID PACE OF DEVELOPMENT IN THE

COMMONWEALTH BY ISSUING A $140,000,000 TAX EXEMPT BOND TO MEET

THE IMMEDIATE AND CRITICAL NEED TO PROVIDE, AMONG OTHER THINGS,

ADEQUATE POWER AND WATER FOR OUR PEOPLE.

TO OBTAIN THE BOND, IT

WAS NECESSARY TO PLEDGE AS COLLATERAL THE PAYMENTS THE UNITED

STATES WAS OBLIGATED TO PAY UNDER SECTION 702 OF THE COVENANT.

HOWEVER, TO OUR GREAT DISMAY AND DISAPPOINTMENT, OUR AGED,

PATCHED-UP INFRASTRUCTURE NOW FACES A VERY CRITICAL CRISIS

BECAUSE OF CONTINUED DELAYS IN OBTAINING THE FIRST DRAWDOWN OF PROCEEDS FROM THE BOND. WHAT STARTED AS A CREATIVE FINANCING EFFORT TO SUPPORT OUR UNPRECEDENTED AND UNANTICIPATED GROWTH HAS

UNFORTUNATELY TURNED INTO A SERIES OF DELAYS.

AS A CONDITION TO

ALLOW THESE COVENANT FUNDS TO SERVE AS COLLATERAL, THE DEPARTMENT

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OF THE INTERIOR REQUIRED OUR GOVERNMENT TO ACCEPT TWO SUBSIDIARY AGREEMENTS. THIS WAS DONE EVEN THOUGH OUR COMMONWEALTH WAS

ENTITLED TO, AND THE UNITED STATES WAS OBLIGATED TO PAY, THE

PROCEEDS OF SECTION 702 WITHOUT CONDITION BY THE TERMS OF THE

COVENANT. TO US IN THE COMMONWEALTH, SUCH MANIPULATION AND

RESULTING FUNDING DELAYS CAUSED BY THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

INSULTS THE VERY ESSENCE OF OUR COVENANT RELATIONSHIP WITH THE UNITED STATES. BECAUSE WE HAVE NOT YET BEEN ABLE TO SATISFY ALL OF THE CONDITIONS FOR RELEASING SUCH FUNDS, OUR PEOPLE ARE OFTEN LEFT WITHOUT WATER SERVICES FOR MOST OF THE DAY AND NIGHT, AND OFTEN WITHOUT POWER.

IN ADDITION, WHILE INTERIOR OFFICIALS PROMISED MONTHS AGO AN

BARLY DRAWDOWN OF THE FUNDS, NEW CONDITIONS HAVE BEEN IMPOSED.
YET, THE FACT REMAINS: 1) AS REQUIRED BY INTERIOR, WE ARE WORKING
HARD TO COMPLETE A SEVERY-YEAR CAPITAL DEVELOPMENT PLAN FOR THE

BOND; 2) WE ARE IN THE PROCESS OF PRIVATIZING OUR UTILITIES AS

REQUIRED BY INTERIOR; AND, 3) WE ARE WORKING TOWARDS FULL COST RECOVERY AS REQUIRED BY INTERIOR. THEREFORE, WE RESPECTFULLY

REQUEST THAT YOUR SUBCOMMITTEE DO EVERYTHING POSSIBLE TO HELP

UNTANGLE THIS PROBLEM WITH THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR

REGARDING OUR BOND ISSUE. PLEASE HELP US RECEIVE OUR PROMISED COVENANT FUNDS. OTHERWISE, THE CONTINUING WITHHOLDING OF THESE

FUNDS WILL SOON JEOPARDIZE ALL THE DEVELOPMENT AND PROGRESS THAT

HAS BEEN MADE TO DATE.

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WATER DEVELOPMENT ON SAIPAN

THE PROBLEM OF SAIPAN'S WATER SHORTAGE IS OUR NUMBER ONE

PRIORITY IN THE COMMONWEALTH.

WATER RATIONING HAS BEEN A FACT OF

LIFE ON SAIPAN FOR MORE THAN TEN YEARS.

ALTHOUGH SAIPAN'S

POPULATION HAS DOUBLED SINCE 1980, AND DESPITE A RAPIDLY GROWING

TOURIST INDUSTRY, THE AVAILABILITY OF WATER ON SAIPAN HAS NOW

REACHED CRISIS PROPORTIONS.

IN MANY AREAS OF SAIPAN, WATER IS

AVAILABLE ONLY FOR SEVERAL HOURS A DAY.

LOCAL RESIDENTS AND

TOURISTS ALIKE BATHE FROM BUCKETS.

DIRTY DISHES AND LAUNDRY

OFTENTIMES CANNOT BE WASHED.

TOILETS OFTEN REMAIN UNFLUSHED.

MOST OF SAIPAN'S WATER CANNOT BE DRUNK FROM THE TAP.

MOST OF THE

ISLAND'S WATER TRANSMISSION LINES ARE CRACKED AND LEAKING FROM

OLD AGE AND RUST, AND ABOUT 50% TO 60% OF THE WATER PUMPED IS

LOST THROUGH LEAKAGE IN THESE BAD PIPES.

CONSEQUENTLY, MOST

PIPES ARE CONTAMINATED WITH GROUND WATER.

THE CONTAMINATED

GROUND WATER IS PIPED TO THE CONSUMER MIXED WITH CONTAMINATED

RUST AND HEALTH THREATENING BACTERIA.

FOR THIS REASON, THE COMMONWEALTH LEGISLATURE CREATED A

SPECIAL JOINT COMMITTEE ON WATER RESOURCES IN MARCH 1988 TO

ASSIST OUR ADMINISTRATION IN FINDING PRACTICAL SOLUTIONS TO THIS

THE JOINT COMMITTEE'S FINDINGS WILL BE PUBLISHED

IN A REPORT EXPECTED IN A FEW WEEKS, WHICH WILL INCLUDE SOME

WORK SHOULD BEGIN AT THE EARLIEST

POSSIBLE DATE ON A PHASE-BY-PHASE BASIS.

IN THE INTERIM,

HOWEVER, SEVERAL FACTS REMAIN UNDISPUTED: 1) WATER TRANSMISSION

LINES AND EQUIPMENT ARE A PATCH WORK AFFAIR AND NEED UPGRADING; 2) WATER INFRASTRUCTURE LAGS FAR BEHIND SAIPAN'S RAPID PACE OF

DEVELOPMENT; 3) ALTERNATIVE WATER SOURCES DESPERATELY NEED TO BE

SOUGHT AND DEVELOPED.

FORTUNATELY, THE FIRST COMPLETE SCIENTIFIC SURVEY OF SAIPAN'S

WATER SOURCES IS ABOUT TO BEGIN BY THE U.S. GEOLOGICAL SURVEY.

WHILE WE ARE NOT SURE WHEN THE CONTRACT WITH USGS WILL BE

COMPLETED, WE EXPECT SOME TEST HOLES TO BE DUG SOON, WHICH CAN BE

CONVERTED INTO NEW WELLS.

BUT IT WILL UNDOUBTEDLY TAKE AN

OVERCEILING APPROPRIATION FOR THESE VITAL NEEDS, AND WE SOLICIT

YOUR SUPPORT IN THIS REGARD.

PORT DEVELOPMENT

OUR COMMERCIAL PORT AT SAIPAN IS THE MAIN DOCK FOR ALL

SHIPPING ACTIVITIES IN THE NORTHERN MARIANAS.

YET WE ARE WORKING

WITH A PORT INFRASTRUCTURE THAT WAS BUILT BY THE JAPANESE, LEFT

OVER FROM WORLD WAR TWO, AND REBUILT BY THE U.S. MILITARY.

AT

PRESENT IT IS IN AN EXTREME STATE OF DISREPAIR AND POSES HAZARDS

TO ALL USERS.

MEANWHILE, SHIPPING ACTIVITIES AT OUR SAIPAN PORT

HAVE MORE THAN DOUBLED IN THE PAST THREE YEARS, AND THIS UPWARD

TREND UNDOUBTEDLY CONTINUE IN THE FORESEEABLE FUTURE.

THREE OR

POUR SHIPS ARE OFTEN MOORED OUTSIDE THE SAIPAN HARBOR WAITING

THEIR TURN TO DOCK AT OUR OBSOLETE AND CONGESTED PORT AREA.

SHIPS ALSO REPORT TOUCHING BOTTOM IN THE SAIPAN CHANNEL ENTRANCE.

THEREFORE, THE ASSISTANCE WE URGENTLY NEED IS TWOPOLD: 1) TO

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