Finance: Premium Pay strictly for employees given forms

Posted on Sep 20 2022

The Department of Finance clarified that the American Rescue Plan Act Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds is strictly for employees who have been given the form directly from the Office of the Secretary (i.e. priority healthcare, private medical clinics, pharmacies, and renal care facilities).

Finance came out with the clarification after finding out that ARPA SLFRF Non-Governmental Healthcare Premium Pay forms created specifically for this program have been circulating through Social Media outlets such as Facebook and WhatsApp, causing turmoil within our community by advertising that “Premium Pay is being offered to everyone so long as they submit this form.” 

Finance said this is not true and that they’re addressing this issue after receiving an overwhelming amount of phone calls and emails.

Additionally, Finance would like to inform the public that Sept. 30, 2022, will be the last day to submit all requests for Premium Pay for Government Frontliners and Non-GovernmentalHealthcare Private sector employees, as well as submissions of Nonprofit assistance requests. 

In 2021, The U.S. Treasury announced additional COVID-19 relief assistance in the form of the American Rescue Plan Act Coronavirus State and Local Fiscal Recovery Funds. As a result, the CNMI government received $481 million dollars for COVID-19 economic relief assistance to state, local, and tribal governments.

Gov. Ralph DLG Torres, with the assistance of Finance Secretary David DLG Atalig, created the CNMI Spending Plan and allocated funds into four sections. Section 602(A)—to assist households, small businesses, nonprofits or aid to impacted industries such as tourism, travel, and hospitality. Section 602(B)—to provide premium pay to frontliners in the CNMI government and priority healthcare in the private Sector. Section 602(C)—to reinstate furloughed employees, continuity of government services, and resume operations and activities of the Judicial and Legislative Branches. Lastly, Section 602(D)—to make investments in water, sewer, or broadband infrastructure.

In March of 2022, the Department of Finance, Office of the Secretary launched its Premium Pay Program for private sector frontliners that provide priority healthcare services, as these organizations have been at the frontlines alongside our COVID Task Force and Law Enforcement from the start of the COVID-19 Pandemic. This specific Premium Pay Program was created due to the number of patients, frequencies of procedures, emergencies, and preventions all related to COVID-19. (PR)

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