IPI to seek local workers once OK’d to resume construction

Posted on Aug 12 2021


Reddie Dela Cruz

With Imperial Pacific International (CNMI) LLC currently barred from hiring foreign workers, the company will be sourcing its workers from the local workforce once it is given the green light to proceed with the construction of its casino/resort project in Garapan.

In response to Commonwealth Casino Commission chair Edward C. DeLeon Guerrero’s question during a recent CCC board meeting, IPI Human Resources director Reddie Dela Cruz said that IPI will not be getting foreign workers just yet once project construction resumes. This is because IPI is banned from hiring H2-B and CW workers as the U.S. Department of Labor has barred the company from hiring foreign workers for five years.

However, since she is not in charge of IPI’s finances and since everything is suspended right now, Dela Cruz said she has no idea where the money might come from if IPI is allowed to proceed with the construction.

When asked as to who may know where the money will come from, Dela Cruz said she is not sure but maybe the company’s Finance Department or IPI chief executive officer Ray N. Yumul.

Dela Cruz said IPI has only about 40 employees at present, mostly assigned to security.

She said there is also a small team from Finance that is handling payroll to ensure that everyone gets paid timely. “There’s also all these legal matters that we are all pitching in to work on,” she said.

On the HR side, she said they have not sought out any manpower agency, but that the construction team has had some discussion with local contractors. “But there’s really no way for us to say when that’s actually going to happen,” she said.

Dela Cruz said she and the rest of the current employees are being paid on time, with the money coming from Hong Kong and that they are using IPI’s local bank account.

Last January, U.S. District Court for the NMI Chief Judge Ramona V. Manglona issued a stop order at IPI’s hotel/casino construction site—except for the administrative and security personnel—for violating a previously entered consent judgment and not paying IPI employees for over two months.

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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