Marianas Variety

Last updateSat, 18 Aug 2018 12am

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    Friday, August 17, 2018-11:43:16A.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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OPINION: Dear people of the commonwealth

I AM running for a seat in the House of Representatives, Precinct 2, because, like you, I love our islands and our people, and I am deeply concerned about the direction we are headed as a community.

I want to help get us on a path to a safer, healthier, and more beautiful Marianas that we can be proud of.

I firmly believe that we can and should work to create an economy that raises the quality of life for us all.

Tina Sablan

And I am committed to building a government that is transparent and accountable, one that works for all the people it represents, rather than the special interests of a few.

I am asking for your support, and for your partnership, to work towards this vision of a better Marianas, together.

Here is what you can expect of me, as your representative in the Legislature:

1. I will be open and transparent with you. Campaign finance reports should be accessible and open records prior to elections. Currently, they are not; I will post mine publicly before the election as well as after. The statements of financial interest that elected and appointed government officials submit to the Public Auditor should be disclosed to the public. Currently, they are not; I will disclose mine. Furthermore, the voting records of all our lawmakers should be readily available. Currently, they are not. If I am elected, I will let you know how I voted, and why I voted, on every bill. And I will push to make all of this information, from campaign funding and financial interests to voting decisions, more open and available to you, from all public officials.

2. I will consult with you, and I will listen. Transparent and accountable government depends on active and informed citizens, and I will regularly share updates with you about our work in the legislature, and listen to your concerns and ideas. I will do this through monthly precinct meetings, social media, and the development of a new civic leadership training program to build our capacity to advocate for the changes we want to see in the Marianas.

3. I will put the well-being of our community first. In appropriations, I will champion investments in our health care system, public safety, infrastructure, education and workforce training, village revitalization, and the protection of our natural, cultural, and historic resources. I will fight to repeal the 80 percent salary increase for lawmakers, and oppose lavish pay hikes for top executive officials.  I will push for a fair and reasonable casino gaming tax, and to restore the Earned Income Tax Credit to help struggling families. I will work to expand services and opportunities for our veterans, military personnel, and their families. And I will advocate constantly for well-planned development that benefits our entire community and respects our island culture and environment.   

Values, experience, and education

I have worked in public service throughout my life, guided by the values that my parents, Eugenio and Carmela, raised me with: honesty, integrity, respect, and commitment to the long-term benefit of our community. I was born on Saipan, and grew up in Chalan Kanoa and Tanapag. I now reside in Susupe.

Presently, I am the deputy communications director and outreach coordinator for our delegate to the U.S. Congress, Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan. I have previously served as a member of the 16th Northern Marianas House of Representatives, television news reporter and anchor for KSPN2, program manager for the Commonwealth Cancer Association, and environmental specialist and waste reduction coordinator for the Division of Environmental Quality.

I hold a master’s degree in urban and regional planning (University of Hawaii at Manoa, 2016), a graduate certificate in conflict resolution (UH Manoa, 2016), and a Bachelor of Science in conservation science (College of Santa Fe, 2003).

My pledge to you

If I am elected, my pledge to you is to honor the trust that you give me, and to represent you honestly, with integrity, and with the well-being of our community in mind.

Together we can take better care of our precinct and our islands. We can make our government more transparent and responsive to our needs. And we can build a safer, healthier, and more beautiful Marianas that we will be proud to pass on to our children.

Contact me

For more information about the campaign, to set up a meeting, or to share your concerns and ideas for a better community, please call me at 285-3935 or email tinasablan@gmail.com. You can also find me on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, @votetinasablan. I hope to hear from you, and I thank you for your support.

The writer is a resident of Susupe, Saipan.