The Commonwealth Ports Authority board of directors has approved the hiring of at least 13 personnel to fill positions that have been left vacant by resignations and retirement.
The hiring of replacements was endorsed by personnel affairs committee chair Fermin Sakisat and was unanimously supported by his colleagues at a recent meeting.
A vacancy announcement for each post is expected to be issued soon.
Saipan Tribune learned that eight CPA employees resigned from their jobs this year. These included two trainees for Aircraft Rescue Firefighting, two controller 1, three ports police trainees, and an administrative secretary. The ports authority also lost two personnel on Tinian—an ARFF trainee and a radio operator—while Rota airport needs to fill three vacant positions, including two ports police trainees and one radio operator.
As of Aug. 30, the ports authority has 192 FTEs on three islands, according to CPA executive director MaryAnn Lizama.
Meantime, board member Barrie Toves disclosed that the Rota airport needs additional FTEs to cover safety on the island. He said there are only nine CPA personnel handling security for the Rota airport and seaport for the longest time.
“We feel that FTE at Rota is not adequate to cover safety because we have only nine ARFF personnel who are also serving as our ports police. With the flights activities, I am asking that we add at least two more FTEs for Rota-CPA,” Toves told his colleagues.
According to Toves, there are times when personnel on Rota have to work 16-hour shifts just to cover the jobs at the airport. Compared to Tinian, which has 14 FTEs, Toves said it’s about time that Rota is also given an adequate number of staff.
“Please put that in consideration on the next budget [for FY 2014],” pleaded Toves.
The board later approved adding up to four FTEs for the Rota airport on the condition that there are funds available to hire the requested additional FTEs for fiscal year 2014.