David DLG Atalig has accepted a position as the governor’s special assistant for revenue and taxation.
Atalig returned to Saipan early this year after almost 10 years of working and living in West Coast, including in Draper City, Utah. He previously worked in numerous agencies and departments in the local government before moving to the U.S. mainland.
He said he returned to the CNMI to help the Commonwealth government in its revenue collection programs, almost four months after Super Typhoon Yutu ravaged the islands.
This was echoed by Gov. Ralph DLG Torres, who said his administration brought in Atalig to help the Division of Revenue and Taxation.
“I want to congratulate and thank him [Atalig] for coming back home and, so far, in the last two weeks, he has done a great job in updating our status. He has proposed numerous programs on how to go out to our local and business community and have a better relationship in paying their taxes,” Torres said.
The Revenue and Taxation Division remains without a director for eight years now and Torres said that Atalig’s appointment is part of his administration’s plan of having someone help the government this tax season.
“I know that the position [Revenue and Taxation director] has been announced and it was closed [application] on Feb. 17. That will be up to the [Office of Personnel Management]. We’re still moving in making sure that I don’t want to wait any longer,” said Torres.
Atalig has a bachelor ‘s degree in Business Administration with emphasis in Finance and Management at the University of San Diego. He also earned certificates and had trainings in accounting, business management, and institutional planning and budget.
His first job was as clinic administrator at the Saipan Health Clinic, then he worked for seven years at the Northern Marianas College as the Budget Office head and director for Finance and Administrative Services.
Atalig then moved the Marianas Public Lands Authority as Capital Improvement Plan coordinator/financial analyst and worked for one year as director of the Finance Division of the Department of Public Lands. He also worked in Oregon, Utah, and San Diego before moving back to Saipan.
Torres, meanwhile, said that his administration is still working on the replacement for Finance Secretary Larrisa Larson, who remains the department’s head despite not being included on the list of those re-appointed to the Cabinet.
The Senate Executive Appointments and Government Investigations Committee, chaired by Sen. Francisco Q. Cruz (R-Tinian), would soon hold confirmation hearings for the nine other Cabinet members who were re-appointed.
Mark Rabauliman (Commerce), Robert Hunter (Community and Cultural Affairs), Vincent Attao (Corrections), Clyde Norita (Fire and Emergency Medical Services), Vicky Benavente (Labor), Anthony Benavente (Lands and Natural Resources), Marianne Teregeyo (Public Lands), and Robert Guerrero (Public Safety) were on the list submitted by the administration to the Senate.