Sen. Teresita A. Santos (Ind-Rota) has backed the Commonwealth Ports Authority’s Rota application for the Maintenance Assistance Program under the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Office of Insular Affairs for the island’s ports.
Santos said this grant is critical as it will support, develop, improve, and institutionalize infrastructure maintenance at both Rota’s airport and seaport.
The senator recently informed Rota Ports manager Sharlene Manglona that she already wrote DOI to support CPA’s application for MAP.
“During these difficult economic times, it is imperative that we seek other financial resources to implement our limited coffers,” said Santos in the letter to Keone Nakoa, who is the DOI deputy assistant secretary for Insular and International Affairs.
The senator said the federal-state-local partnership has proved its value in measurable economic improvements. She said continued partnership is absolutely necessary to the future economic viability of the region.
Santos said she understands firsthand the critical importance of securing and maintaining well-developed ports and recognize the significance of the Maintenance Assistance Program. She said the improvements provided through these funds will not only benefit the ports but will greatly benefit the people as well.
The DOI’s Office of Insular Affairs announced last month that applications for fiscal year 2022 funding under MAP may now be submitted to grants.gov for funding consideration to support the CNMI and other U.S. territories, as well as the Federated States of Micronesia, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, and the Republic of Palau.
Nakoa said they are especially interested in activities that will support maintenance training to extend the life of island infrastructure, ensure the safety of maintenance technicians, and/or increase the capacity of infrastructure to withstand extreme weather events.
MAP funding is available for projects intended to develop insular institutions that improve the operation and maintenance of infrastructure in the island areas.
Deadline for submission is April 1, 2022.