15 Jan 2018
- Mar-Vic Cagurangan – For Variety
HAGÅTÑA — Guam and CNMI officials will gather on Tuesday for the One Marianas Summit that will flesh out details of the cooperation pact signed by the heads of the two jurisdictions last year.
The summit will be hosted by the Office of the Governor of Guam and Offices of Homeland Security and Civil Defense from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Pacific Star Resort and Spa in Tumon.
Summit participants will include Guam and CNMI representatives from homeland security, labor departments, tourism bureaus, public health, economic development, public safety and communications.
“The summit is an opportunity to build on the already substantial working relationships we have now,” states a press release from the Office of the Guam Governor.
The memorandum of agreement signed by Guam Gov. Eddie Calvo and CNMI Gov. Ralph Torres on Dec. 18, 2017 covers such as areas as free trade, food security, health, tourism, homeland security and labor.
At this year’s summit, the Calvo administration said, “the working group will allow the two island governments to speak with a collective voice on local, regional, and national issues and develop policy solutions to mutually benefit both jurisdictions.”
Both Guam and the CNMI, while seeing economic growth driven by construction, military and tourism, face a looming labor crisis.
Although the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act allows U.S. Immigration and Citizenship Services the discretion to approve up to 4,000 H-2B visas for defense projects, such flexibility doesn’t apply to civilian projects outside the military fence.
The CNMI is seeking an extension of the federal CW1 program which is set to end in Dec. 2019.
Source: Marianas Variety : http://www.mvariety.com/cnmi/cnmi-news/local/101491-one-marianas-summit-to-tackle-terms-of-guam-nmi-cooperation