World Resort pool eyed for Micro Games

Posted on Oct 07 2005

To minimize costs, Commonwealth Development Authority board chair Tom Glenn Quitugua is suggesting that the government use the proposed Olympic-size swimming pool of the Saipan World Resort for the 2006 Micronesian Games.

“This could solve the traffic problem. World Resort is constructing an Olympic-size swimming pool as part of its waterpark attraction. Hopefully, it’s done in time for the Micronesia Games,” said Quitugua yesterday.

World Resort is awaiting the government’s approval of tax relief for its $25.5 million expansion program.

Quitugua earlier said that the hotel is certain to get a qualifying certificate for the expansion program but details on the tax relief have yet to be discussed.

He said yesterday that CDA, in consultation with the Division of Revenue and Tax, hopes to decide on the hotel’s application within two weeks.

He said that meetings are scheduled on Oct. 12, 13, and 14 on World Resort’s QC application.

“We’re waiting for the Rev and Tax presentation. We’re also meeting with the Executive department. We’ll put up together a recommendation after these meetings,” he said.

World Corp., which operates Saipan World Resort, plans on investing $25.5 million for the renovation and expansion of its resort hotel in Susupe.

It is asking the CNMI government for 100 percent business gross revenue tax abatement, 100 percent corporate income tax rebate, and 100 percent tax abatement for hotel occupancy that exceeds 2004 level. The hotel wants to receive the tax relief over a period of 25 years.

World Resort was earlier granted $4 million worth of tax incentives for 10 years under its 2004 application.

Gov. Juan N. Babauta approved the hotel’s original application on Aug. 31, 2004, which was based on the hotel’s February 2004 expansion plan, which had an estimated cost of $14 million.

The hotel decided to give up the existing QC and redo the entire application process in view of its additional investments this year. The new project includes the construction of a waterpark, additional rooms, a 25-meter national standard race pool, a day care center for children, an outdoor stage, and other facilities.

Meantime, the Department of Community and Cultural Affairs is asking the assistance of CDA for a $5.8 million funding to renovate and construct sports facilities on Saipan in relation to its hosting of the 2006 Micronesia Games.

DCCA said this funding would be used to construct a new Olympic-size swimming pool and tennis courts at the Oleai Sports Complex, renovation of the Gilbert C. Ada Gymnasium, installation of additional lighting at the Olympic-standard Oleai track and field, renovation of the Kan Pacific swimming pool, construction of grandstands at the three Oleai Sports Complex fields, and construction of toilet and shower facilities.

The 2006 Micronesian Games is expected to be held on Saipan on June 23 to July 7.

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