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EXPANSION OF OUR AGRICULTURAL SECTOR, AND HELP MEET THE DEMAND

FOR FRESH FRUITS AND VEGETABLES FOR OUR FAST GROWING VISITORS

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COSTS, WE ARE VERY CONCERNED INDEED ABOUT THE POSSIBLE ADVERSE

IMPACT OF THE BROOKS AMENDMENT'S "BUY AMERICAN" REQUIREMENT.

IF

APPLIED TO OUR ISLANDS, THE COST OF URGENTLY NEEDED CONSTRUCTION PROJECTS WOULD SKYROCKET AND HAVE A DRASTIC IMPACT ON PENDING

INFRASTRUCTURE PROJECTS. HOWEVER, SINCE SUCH FUNDING UNDER THE

COMMONWEALTH COVENANT IS CONSIDERED "LOCAL REVENUES", WE FEEL AN

EXEMPTION SHOULD BE MADE FORM THE BROOKS AMENDMENT FOR THE CNMI.

MELON FY ERADICATION

OUR ISLANDS ARE FERTILE AND ARABLE, AND IF DEVELOPED CAN

PROVIDE US WITH AN ABUNDANCE OF FRUITS, VEGETABLES AND FOOD CROPS

FOR OUR RESIDENTIAL AND TOURIST POPULATION.

BUT THIS POTENTIAL

IS THREATENED BY THE SERIOUS INFESTATION OF THE HARMFUL MELON

FLY, WHICH HAS SPREAD FROM GUAM, NORTHWARD TO ROTA AND THE REST

OF THE NORTHERN MARIANAS. IN 19083, THE GOVERNMENTS OF GUAM AND THE CNMI JOINTLY REQUESTED ASSISTANCE FROM EXPERTS OF ;USDA'S PLANT PROTECTION OFFICES. THEY MADE AN INVESTIGATION AND

RECOMMENDATIONS WERE MADE.

ON ROTA, FOR EXAMPLE, THEY FOUND THE

PROBLEM SO SERIOUS THAT A QUARANTINE WAS IMPOSED ON ALL OUR

EXPORTS FIVE YEAR AGO, WHICH, NEEDLESS TO SAY, HAS HAD A MOST

NEGATIVE EFFECT ON OUR FRAMERS.

USDA EXPERTS SAY THE SOLUTION TO THIS PROBLEM IS TO ATTACH

THE MELON FLY SIMULTANEOUSLY THROUGHOUT THE COMMONWEALTH.

THEY

HAVE RECOMMENDED SEVERAL ERADICATION METHODS AND ESTIMATED OVER A

YEAR AGO THAT MORE THAN $4,000,000 WILL BE NEEDED TO ACCOMPLISH

THIS EFFORT IN A TWO TO THREE YEAR PERIOD.

HOWEVER, AS LONG AS THE MELON FLY EXISTS ON NEARBY GUAM, IT

WILL ALWAYS BE A THREAT TO ISLANDS TO THE NORTH.

FOR THESE

REASONS, THEREFORE, WE WISH TO ASK YOUR SUBCOMMITTEE TO PROVIDE

AN OVERCEILING APPROPRIATION FOR A SIMULTANEOUS ERADICATION

PROJECT FOR NOT ONLY THE CNMI BUT GUAM AS WELL.

IN THIS MANNER,

WE CAN BEGIN TO REBUILD OUR AGRICULTURE, AND AGAIN MAKE IT A

VIABLE INDUSTRY FOR OUR PEOPLE.

AMERICAN MEMORIAL PARK

ALL THE COURAGEOUS AMERICAN SOLDIERS, SAILORS, AND MARINES

WHO FOUGHT SO VALIANTLY, AND THOSE WHO MADE THE SUPREME SACRIFICE

FOR FREEDOM DURING THE LIBERATION OF SAIPAN DESERVE OUR PRAISE

AS A CONSTANT REMINDER TO ALL OF US, U.S. PUBLIC LAW

AND HONOR.

95-348 AUTHORIZED $3,000,000 TO BE APPROPRIATED FOR THE DESIGN

AND CONSTRUCTION OF THE AMERICAN MEMORIAL PARK.

MANY

YEARS AGO, JAPAN, KOREA, AND OKINAWA BUILT SUITABLE

MEMORIALS TO HONOR THEIR WAR DEAD IN THE NORTHERN MARIANAS.

AS

AMERICANS, IT IS ONLY MOST PROPER AND FITTING THAT A SIMILAR

MEMORIAL BE BUILT BY OUR OWN NATION.

IF THIS SUBCOMMITTEE WOULD

URGE THE FULL CONGRESS TO CONSIDER AN OVERCEILING REQUEST TO

HONOR THE MANY THOUSANDS OF AMERICAN SERVICEMEN WHO DIED FOR

FREEDOM ON OUR ISLANDS, FUTURE GENERATIONS WILL BETTER REMEMBER

THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THAT GREAT CONFLICT.

WAIVER OF PRMA CONTRIBUTION

IN THE PAST 18 MONTHS, SEVERAL MAJOR TYPHOONS HIT OUR ISLANDS

RESULTING IN PRESIDENTIAL DECLARATIONS OF THE COMMONWEALTH AS A

DISASTER AREA.

ASSISTANCE FROM THE FEDERAL EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT

AGENCY (FEMA) WAS IMMEDIATELY IMPLEMENTED, WHICH WAS PREDICATED

UPON A 25% LOCAL ASSISTANCE CONTRIBUTION.

HOWEVER, WHILE WE

RECOGNIZE THE FAIRNESS OF THE 25% REQUIREMENT, THE IMPACT OF

THESE REPEATED TYPHOONS, PARTICULARLY ON OUR INFRASTRUCTURE, HAS LEFT OUR GOVERNMENT IN A VERY DIFFICULT FINANCIAL POSITION.

IN ADDITION, BECAUSE WE ARE LOCATED IN A TYPHOON-PHRONE AREA,

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IN THE LONG RUN MANY FEDERAL DOLLARS COULD BE SAVED IF EXISTING

FEMA REGULATIONS COULD BE MODIFIED TO ALLOW CONSTRUCTION OF A

MORE PERMANENT TYPE OF HOUSING, RATHER THAN THE "TEMPORARY"

HOUSES WHICH ARE ALWAYS VULNERABLE TO THE NEXT TYPHOON.

BECAUSE

OF THE FREQUENCY OF SUCH MAJOR TYPHOONS IN THE WESTERN PACIFIC,

WE SHOULD SPEND THESE FEDERAL DOLLARS FOR THE SAFEST, MOST

DURABLE AND LONG LASTING HOUSING AVAILABLE.

TO OUR PEOPLE, THIS

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CONCLUSION

MR. CHAIRMAN, YOUR SUBCOMMITTEE HAS ALWAYS BEEN VERY

RECEPTIVE AND UNDERSTANDING TO OUR NEEDS IN THE PAST IN ASSISTING

OUR NEW COMMONWEALTH IN PROVIDING VITAL PUBLIC SERVICES TO OUR

PEOPLE AND GROWING PRIVATE SECTOR.

IT IS IN THIS SPIRIT THAT WE

CONFIDE TO YOU OUR SPECIAL NEEDS AND CONCERNS WHICH HOLD THE KEY

TO OUR CONTINUED GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT. EQUALLY IMPORTANT ARE THE PRANK AND CANDID DISCUSSIONS REGARDING THE DIFFICULTIES WE

ARE NOW EXPERIENCING WITH OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE FEDERAL

GOVERNMENT IN GENERAL, AND THE DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR IN

PARTICULAR, IN CONNECTION WITH THE LARGELY MISINTERPRETED

COMMONWEALTH COVENANT AGREEMENT.

INDEED, WE WISH TO CONTINUE OUR RELATIONSHIP WITH THE UNITED

STATES, BUT CERTAINLY NOT AS A CONTINUAL SUITOR FOR PROMISED

FUNDING.

THE PAYMENTS THAT WE HAVE REQUESTED TODAY ARE MORAL AND

LEGAL OBLIGATIONS OF THE UNITED STATES.

WE CONSIDER THEM TO BE

BASIC NECESSITIES THAT ARE VITAL FOR OUR CONTINUED DEVELOPMENT,

UPON WHICH RESTS AMERICA'S PRIMARY INTERESTS OF PEACE AND

SECURITY IN THE WESTERN PACIFIC.

ON BEHALF O THE PEOPLE OF THE ISLANDS OF THE NORTHERN

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PLEASE ACCEPT OUR DEEPEST THANK YOU AND "SI YUUS MA' ASB."

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