April 16, 2021
Together, We Can. This mantra reminds us how we can turn things around for our islands and our people with or without the COVID-19 pandemic.
Groups that are on board with the Governor’s Council of Economic Advisers’ (GCEA) Public Private Partnership campaign are proof of how collaborative efforts can help bring the positive changes we all want for the CNMI.
We have the E-Land Group teaming up with Gregorio T. Camacho Elementary School students, parents, and teachers to clean up Paupau Beach and donating supplies to the Division of Parks and Recreation to reopen the restroom facility at the site. Then there are the Saipan Lions Clubs’ seven groups with more than 1,000 members who are doing monthly clean-ups. The Saipan Mayor’s Office staff is also busy supporting the maintenance of the Garapan medians as well as the Oleai Sports Complex grounds.
House members of the 22nd CNMI Legislature, both from the minority and majority blocs, are on board, too. Rep. Sheila Babauta worked with the Socho Basketball Club for the transformation of the As Matuis basketball court and will move to the Tanapag facility with the Talaabwogh Stars later this month. Rep. Leila Staffler, Rep. Richard Lizama, and their volunteers are joining forces to work on three basketball courts in Kagman, while Rep. Denita Yangetmai and her volunteers will take care of the Civic Center Beach Park pavilions.
The minority members – Minority Leader Rep. Ivan Blanco, Rep. Angel Demapan, Rep. Lee Pan Guerrero, Vice Speaker BJ Attao, Rep. John Paul Sablan, Rep. Joseph Flores, Rep. Joel Camacho, Rep. Patrick San Nicolas, Rep. Roy Ada, and Rep. Ralph Yumul – have also been working on new projects including village basketball courts and many public facilities.
Next month, GCEA Council members will be hosting PPP projects for the basketball courts in Rota, while Tinian will have its turn in June. We welcome volunteers to join us for these projects. More information will be posted on our Facebook page prior to the events.
In Saipan, the Marianas High School Class of 1987 will have a reunion of sorts over water blasters and paint rollers. The alumni will meet at the MHS grounds on April 17 to work on the school’s outdoor basketball court.
Groups stepping forward to adopt sites embody the spirit of working together and the personal investment that the PPP initiative is promoting across the islands. Everyone has a stake in the transformation of our islands’ sites and community facilities, and all are welcome to join the cause.
Rep. Sheila Babauta put it best when she said, “We all belong to this community, and I highly encourage you to consider adopting a space you use or visit often” after the adoption of the As Matuis basketball court.
Last week, the Korean Community of Saipan completed a cleanup at Micro Beach and its new officers have smoothly taken over the project from their predecessors. The Chinese Association of Saipan and Kanoa Resort went back to the Susupe Beach Park and removed two truckloads of broken concrete benches from the site.
The GCEA is grateful for the work its PPP partners have successfully completed since last June and looks forward to many more projects in the pipeline. We are confidently on track to transform our beautiful islands, provide our residents with better quality services and facilities, and give our visitors a welcoming sight when tourism reopens. TOGETHER, WE CAN.
For more information, visit the GCEA on Facebook and Instagram (@cnmigov.economy) or contact them at email@example.com.
By MIKE SABLAN
Mike Sablan is the Vice President of Triple J Enterprises, Inc., a certified public accountant, and chairperson of the Domestic Policy and Recovery Committee of the Governor’s Council of Economic Advisers. As an advisory council for Gov. Torres and Lt. Gov. Palacios, the GCEA’s mission is to improve the quality of life in the CNMI for all residents.