With the official receipt of grant funding from the Department of Defense Office of Economic Adjustment (OEA), the modification study, which assesses environmental impacts and creates a feasibility of navigational features for the Tinian Harbor, will continue to move forward.
According to the administrator for the Office of Grants Management and State Clearinghouse Epi Cabrera, last month, “the OEA notified the CNMI of the award and we worked expeditiously to submit the required financial documents for the immediate disbursement of funds,” he said.
Through a grant co-authored by the Office of the Governor and the CNMI Civil Military Liaison Office, in partnership with the CNMI Office of Grants Management (OGM) & State Clearinghouse, the US Army Corp of Engineers can move forward with the study.
Cabrera added that the funding will go a long way in ensuring the completion of the Tinian Harbor study.
“Earlier this month, we noted the importance of this improvement to our infrastructure and to the Tinian community. I thank the Department of Finance and Division of Treasury for assisting with the wire transfer to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and we extend our appreciation to OEA, the Harbor Task Force and the Office of the Governor,” he said.
The Tinian Harbor will undergo a series of environmental, economic, and structural analyses by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to determine the best possible options to improve harbor navigational features.
According to Gov. Ralph DLG Torres, the improvements made to the harbor will reduce risks and impacts to public and private stakeholders and its surrounding coral reefs and sea life.
Torres noted that the fragile state of the breakwater prompted immediate action to continue the study and that addressing the deteriorating breakwater is critical for the Tinian Harbor to achieve installation sustainment.
Torres expressed that the grant award will complement current plans to revitalize the Commonwealth.
“The Tinian Harbor is a step closer to creating more economic opportunities. I want to reaffirm to the people of Tinian that it is my hope that the study will validate and lock in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ direct participation and long term commitment in the development of navigation improvements at Tinian Harbor, similar to the Rota West Harbor,” Torres said.
Lt. Gov. Victor B. Hocog, chairman of the Rota and Tinian Harbor Task Force, expressed his sincere appreciation to OGM and OEA for their collaboration, emphasizing the historical and economical necessity of our harbors.
“The Tinian Harbor Modification Study seeks to help our entire community, and we look forward to the continued progress and results of the study,” said Hocog.