Zoning Board to deliberate on 3 conditional use applications

THE Zoning Board has placed under advisement three conditional use applications for a motel, an auto shop, and staff housing.

At a public hearing conducted by the board on Feb. 21, the Jiang Zhen Group, which operates the Shanghai Guest House, proposed to occupy an existing four-story building consisting of eight units to operate a motel.

Zoning Administrator Therese Ogumoro said the use for the application is classified as hotel/motel and is permitted in the district as a conditional use.

The project is located on Lot No. H.86-1 in Sadog Tasi which is zoned as rural.

Rep. Leepan Guerrero told the board to be cautious about guest houses that have online transactions with their clients. “We hope this operator is sincere,” he said, adding that it is difficult for the CNMI government to collect the hotel occupancy tax from guest houses and bed and breakfast establishments that deal with their guests through the internet.

Guerrero said House Bill 20-22 which he authored and is now Public Law 20-30 states that bed and breakfast activities are covered by the hotel occupancy tax.

But Jiang Zhen Group financial consultant Antonio Muna said their guests are registered upon arrival at the airport.

Ogumoro said the other applicant, Kuan Y. Leung, operates KL Auto Shop in Susupe and is proposing to construct a new structure with two service bays.

She said the area where the proposed project is located is zoned as village commercial.

The third applicant is Win Win Construction Company Inc. which is proposing to occupy an existing three-story building in San Antonio for staff housing with 220 beds. The building used to be a retail outlet.

Win Win said the staff housing will be used by 400 to 500 workers at an on-going hotel project in San Antonio.

Rep. Leepan Guerrero asked the Zoning Board to approve the application, adding that parking is not an issue since the project site is near the staff housing. For its part, Win Win said it may not be able to fill up all the rooms because of the CW cap.

Source: Marianas Variety :

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