Finance chief’s authority to reprogram funds is renewed


Gov. Ralph DLG Torres renewed Thursday the authority of Finance Secretary David DLG Atalig to reprogram or transfer funds from accounts of any department, agency, office, board, commission, corporation, or other entity of all branches of the government in order to meet the threat of COVID-19.

In signing Executive Order 2020-28, Torres said the Finance secretary shall create a separate business account called the COVID-19 Threat Prevention and Mitigation Account into which all funds taken under his authority shall be deposited. Atalig is required to maintain a strict accounting of the sources of funds deposited into this account and disbursement.

The executive order shall remain in effect for 30 days from Thursday.

Torres first gave the secretary such authority when he first issued Executive Order 2020-05 last March 18. The governor then subsequently renewed the secretary’s authority by signing other executive orders every month.

Torres said that meeting the COVID-19 threat requires a “whole of government” approach such as what the government does in responding to and recovering from typhoons. He said this requires the utilization or potential utilization of all government agencies, personnel, facilities, equipment, and other resources as necessary to respond to the COVID-19 threat.

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
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