Former Saipan senator Thomas P. Villagomez is no longer a member of the Com-monwealth Ports Authority board, of which he has been a member since 2008.
CPA board chair Kimberlyn King-Hinds said in an interview last Friday that Villago-mez’s term as a director had already expired.
Villagomez, who used to chair the board’s committee on financial affairs, was not present during Friday’s board meeting. He was also not present during the board’s special meeting last May 3 on Tinian, where the 40-year $21.9 million worth of lease agreement for the divert airfield was signed.
When asked about Villagomez’s absence last Friday, King-Hinds said there was a memorandum about the terms of the CPA board members.
King-Hinds said there was an opinion from Gov. Ralph DLG Torres’ legal counsel, who determined that the slot that Villagomez was occupying as a board member actually already expired.
“By statute, our terms begin in October. I guess they went back and traced it,” she said.
King-Hinds, however, stated that Villagomez will probably be re-appointed to the board.
In the interim, vice chair Roman Tudela Sr. is the head of the board’s financial affairs committee that Villagomez used to chair.
Villagomez served as acting board chairman for several months when then-chair Jose R. Lifoifoi went on medical and personal leave.
Villagomez was first appointed to the board in 2008 by then-governor Benigno R. Fitial. In 2013, the late governor Eloy S. Inos reappointed him to the board, with Gov. Ralph Torres reappointing him to the post in June 2017.
Aside from King-Hinds and Tudela, the other board members are former senator Pete Reyes, Barrie C. Toves, and Joseph Diaz. Two board positions are vacant.