December 3, 2005
Checks and balances in next administration stressed
The House minority bloc yesterday said the system of checks and balances should be maintained in the next administration, amid a possible Covenant Party rule in the Legislature. The incumbent minority members met Thursday to come up with a plan to get the House leadership. The Republican representatives want Minority Leader Arnold Palacios to be the next speaker always nice politically to have one party controlling the executive and legislative branches. It could help get things done smoothly. But it’s also important to have a check and balance, no matter who the governor is, said Rep. Ramon Tebuteb, spokesperson for the minority bloc.
NWA reaffirms commitment to CNMI
Northwest Airlines reaffirmed yesterday its long-term commitment to the CNMI, noting that this destination will remain attractive to tourists. We continue to make a long-term commitment. It’s not only because my position allows me to say it, but I really mean it. The natural beauty of the islands offers a very good thing to Japanese tourists, said NWA-Japan chairman Jun Mokudai in yesterday’s Marianas Visitors Authority general membership meeting held at Royal Taga Room of Saipan World Resort. Northwest came to the aid of the CNMI just when Japan Airlines announced its pullout from the Marianas. Northwest launched its Saipan-Osaka daily flights on Oct. 1, which is aimed to pick up over one-third of the passenger traffic brought in by JAL which terminated its regular flights after 28 years on Oct. 4.
December 3, 2006
Continental, NWA fail to ink airport accord
Continental Micronesia and Northwest Airlines failed to sign the Commonwealth Port Authority’s new airport user agreement before the Nov. 30 deadline, CPA said. During a board meeting Thursday, CPA executive director Clyde Norita said that both airlines had asked for another extension. “But we’ve extended the deadline since July. Other airlines were able to meet the deadline,” said Norita. He said that when he came on board, the extension deadline to beat was Oct. 30, from Sept. 30. “I extended again the Oct. 30 [deadline] to Nov. 30. We’ve informed them that effective Dec. 1, they will be charged a non-signatory rate at the airport,” said Norita.
Labor cites 46% complaints closure rate
The Department of Labor has cited a 46-percent closure rate for labor complaints this year. Alfred Pangelinan, in his remarks during the first annual workforce development summit held Thursday, said there were 4,417 total complaints filed from 1997 to 2006. A total of 2,151 of these complaints remained as of January this year. As of Oct. 30, 2006, he said that the department has solved 997 of these cases. “The new administration inherited 2,151 pending labor complaints from 1997 to 2006. There were 997 cases closed in the 10-month period. This is a 46-percent closure ratio,” said Pangelinan.
December 3, 2007
Neo Fashion shutting down
Garment manufacturer Neo Fashion Inc. is shutting down operations on Saipan by Jan. 13, 2008. The closure will affect 78 employees who are mostly nonresident workers. The San Antonio-based Neo Fashion is the fourth garment factory to announce closure and suspension of factory operations on the island within the last month. Neo Fashion, through its general manager Hee Chan Lee, recently informed Department of Labor acting director James Ulloa about its plan to cease operations. In the company’s letter to Ulloa, Lee said it is an unfortunate decision for the management.
‘Guam buildup is also good for its neighbors’
The planned military buildup on Guam presents job opportunities not only for Guam residents, but for their neighbors as well, a ranking federal official says. Speaking at the College of Marshall Islands on Thursday, the U.S. deputy assistant secretary of insular affairs said that 12,000 to 15,000 skilled workers will be needed to build facilities to accommodate the transfer of 8,000 Marines and 9,000 family members from Okinawa to Guam. With the limited number of journeyman construction workers that can work on Guam, it is estimated that 75 percent of the workers will have to come from outside Guam, said David B. Cohen.