Lack of quorum stymies Zoning board hearing


File photo shows the Commonwealth Zoning board at a meeting.
(Ferdie De La Torre)

The Commonwealth Zoning board public hearing set for yesterday at the Pedro P. Tenorio Multi-Purpose Center in Susupe was cancelled due to lack of quorum.

Saipan Tribune learned that one board member was ill and the other, Joel C. Camacho, had to take a leave of absence after he was certified as a candidate in the Nov. 6 general election.

By law, the board must have seven members; it takes four members to establish a quorum.

“We need seven board members but now we only have four,” said a board member.

The board is wondering why Gov. Ralph DLG Torres has not appointed a complete board.

Currently, Diego C. Blanco is the chairman, while Mariano Taitano serves as the treasurer, and Joe Ayuyu Jr. is the secretary. Patrick Reyes and Joel C. Camacho are members.

Camacho is running as a Republican for Precinct 4 of the House of the Representatives.

A board member said they did not even show up at the Pedro P. Tenorio Multi-Purpose Center Tuesday. “This is always a concern whenever we plan for board meeting.

The law requires seven members but we only had five at the most,” the member said.

Among the topics set at the cancelled hearing were the American Sinopan LLC’s proposal to amend its conditional use permit to include the construction of 12 villas and a clubhouse on Capitol Hill, and the Eunice SPN Corp.’s proposal to occupy two existing one-story structures to operate a bed and breakfast in As Lito.

The board hearing was originally set for last Thursday, Aug. 23, but it was cancelled to accommodate logistics for Torres’ State of the Commonwealth Address, which was held last Friday at the Multi-Purpose Center.

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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