Payment dispute delays resumption of construction work at casino


Resumption of construction work at the Imperial Pacific Resort in Garapan remains uncertain due to a payment dispute between Imperial Pacific International (CNMI) LLC and its contractor, Saipan Tribune learned yesterday.

IPI chief executive officer Donald Browne said their construction team is not sure when they will resume work due to the payment dispute.

Browne said there is apparently still a payment dispute with their consultant engineers that is causing additional delays in the submission of certified documents to the Department of Public Works.

When asked how much IPI owes the consultant engineers, Browne said it’s unknown as it’s disputed.

Browne said he wishes he has more information but that he’s not involved with the day-to-day construction operations.

Last week Browne disclosed that IPI had already submitted the requested documents to DPW and that the agency is in the process of reviewing it. He said construction will begin once DPW approves the documents. Browne earlier said they expect a quick resolution to the issue. Browne said that, as they can’t afford to lose construction days for clerical issues, they are working diligently to resolve with the engineers and resume construction for the Imperial Pacific Resort.

IPI received the stop-work order from DPW last Oct. 27.

DPW’s Building Safety Code Division ordered IPI to stop work immediately until it complies with the requirement to submit shop drawings and revised plans and have them approved by DPW’s Building Safety officer. DPW also suspended all welding work.

DPW said that failure to comply may result in fees, civil penalties or fines.

DPW said its order will remain in effect until the Building Safety Division rescinds it.

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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