DPW issues notice of violations to IPI

CCC chairman clarifies there’s no order to stop work against IPI

The Building Safety Code Division of the Department of Public Works recently notified Imperial Pacific International (CNMI) LLC about alleged IPI violations pertaining to its ongoing construction of a casino/resort project in Garapan. IPI chief executive officer Donald Browne later described the violations as “clerical issues” that will soon be resolved.

DPW BSCD representative/inspector Gani Salazar issued the notice of violation last Oct. 9; IPI resident project director Jing Zhou received the notice that same day.

When asked for comments yesterday, Browne said the DPW violations are essentially clerical issues and that they have provided the documents to their third-party engineer for submission to DPW.

Tao Xing, IPI senior vice president of Public Affairs, separately said that, according to their construction management, the third-party inspectors and engineers of record have not submitted the special inspection reports and construction documents to DPW. Xing said the inspector and engineer had agreed to submit the documents during their meeting with DPW last Oct. 4 but have not done so yet. Xing said the notice gives IPI 10 working days to correct the violations.

According to the notice, IPI has failed to provide DPW with approved construction documents. BSCD said the company must submit shop drawings and revised plans for approval for building levels 3 to 14.

IPI also allegedly failed to select and obtain approval for an approved agency (special inspector). BSCD said IPI must submit the name of the company selected as its special inspector, and that the company must have a certified welder, electrical engineer, architect, and mechanical engineer on staff. BSCD said the special inspector company is subject to approval by the Building Safety officer.

IPI also allegedly failed to submit approved special inspector reports and tests from June 2019 to the present. BSCD said IPI must submit a special inspection report for September and October 2020.

BSCD said the notice serves as a warning to IPI, its contractor, or any person in charge of the project. “Failure to adhere with this notice will result in a complete stop work order and/or civil penalties,” said BSCD in the notice.

IPI was given 10 days to correct the alleged violations.

Commonwealth Casino Commission board chair Edward C. Deleon Guerrero in an interview clarified that their lawyer, assistant attorney general Michael Ernest, has contacted the lawyer handling DPW matters, who stated that there is no stop work order against IPI in relation to the notice.

Ferdie De La Torre | Reporter
Ferdie Ponce de la Torre is a senior reporter of Saipan Tribune. He has a bachelor’s degree in journalism and has covered all news beats in the CNMI. He is a recipient of the CNMI Supreme Court Justice Award. Contact him at ferdie_delatorre@Saipantribune.com

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