The Saipan Higher Education Financial Assistance program, much like other government programs and agencies, has to comply with the mandates of “Austerity Payday Fridays,” as directed by the governor, according to Saipan Mayor David M. Apatang.
At their meeting yesterday on the possibility of still operating during “Austerity Payday Fridays,” SHEFA board member Francisco Cabrera said that they must consult with the Saipan mayor on the subject since the order is a directive from the governor.
Gov. Ralph DLG Torres reduced the 80-hour work week to 72 hours effective last July 5.
SHEFA was appropriated $470,001.01 through Saipan Local Law 21-5, and $250,000 of the appropriations is reserved for SHEFA personnel and operations.
“I know we’re in austerity but does this appropriation lift us out of these measures?” asked SHEFA board member Raymond Muña.
Apatang said, however, that SHEFA “must follow everybody under the governor’s directive.”
He said the appropriation will help SHEFA be able to pay for operations expenses and other expenses; the rest of the appropriation will be carried over for future expenses.
He said his office and SHEFA must comply with Torres’ directive and observe every other Friday as “Austerity Friday.”
“We just have to plan accordingly and complete all of our required tasks before austerity Friday,” Apatang said.