AMIM talks center on labor and military issues

AMIM members pose for a picture after the conclusion of the two-day general assembly. (Contributed Photo)

Guam landfill issues, CNMI labor issues, and the role of the U.S. military in the Marianas took center stage at the 24th general assembly of the Association of Mariana Islands Mayors, Vice Mayors, and Elected Municipal Council Members at the Guam Reef Hotel in Tumon.

The assembly was held from Nov. 29 to 30. AMIM is composed of mayors from the CNMI and Guam, as well as Guam vice mayors, and elected municipal council members from the municipalities of Rota, Tinian and Aguiguan, and Saipan and the Northern Islands.

Led by AMIM president Tinian Mayor Joey P. San Nicolas, the members held discussions with Chace Anderson, receiver for the Layon Landfill in Inarajan, Guam, and with Joint Region Marianas chief of staff Capt. Jeffrey Grimes.

Anderson gave an in-depth presentation on the functions of the receiver as well as their outreach efforts to ensure full compliance of federal orders by government agencies, commercial vendors, and island residents. Island mayors asked Anderson about how their villages can improve their solid waste disposal services. Agana Heights Mayor Paul McDonald expressed his frustration with illegal dumping.

Grimes highlighted Joint Region Marianas’ role in the Marianas.

“We have evolved into a remarkable community and family with one unified goal at the forefront, and that is to ensure the protection and defense of our people, our islands, our region and our nation,” Grimes said.

Tinian Municipal Council chair Antonio SN Borja requested that the military clean up all unexploded ordnances located throughout the island of Tinian. Rota Mayor Efrain Atalig invited Joint Region Marianas to Rota for rest and relaxation.

AMIM members also adopted resolutions requesting that action be taken by federal and CNMI and Guam governments. Saipan Mayor David M. Apatang introduced a resolution strongly urging the federal government to assist Guam and the CNMI with their labor needs, particularly with H-2B workers on Guam and CNMI-only transitional workers. San Nicolas introduced a resolution requesting the Guam and CNMI legislatures to enact laws that would establish an environmental court in both jurisdictions.

“It was indeed a pleasure to work with our Marianas mayors, vice mayors, and municipal council members on such important issues. I was especially pleased to welcome our newest member, Northern Islands Mayor Vicente Santos Jr., to the Association of Mariana Islands Mayors,” said San Nicolas. (PR)

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