Marianas Variety

Last updateThu, 27 Jul 2017 12am

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    Tuesday, July 25, 2017-8:33:33A.M.

     

     

     

     

     

Editorials 2017-Jul-14

Regarding the marine monument

PRESIDENTS Bush and Obama dedicated huge swathes of public land and oceans to conservation for present and future generations, but the current U.S. administration has decided to take another look, and some states and territories agree.

In the NMI, Governor Torres and the Senate are reminding the U.S. that since the designation of the Marianas Trench Marine National Monument in Jan. 2009, the promised benefits have not materialized. Monument proponents say the “solution” is not to disavow the endeavor, but to press the federal government to follow through on its commitments to provide the know-how and the programs that can support the initiative’s success.

Of course, the “lesson” here is an old one: government, any government, saying that “this should be so” doesn’t necessarily mean that it will be so.

Meantime, NMI Republican officials may want to seek guidance from national Republican honchos on how the commonwealth can protect itself from proposed federal cuts to Medicare, Medicaid and SNAP.

Pay now while you still can

WHILE the local economy continues to recover, the administration and the Legislature should consider more comprehensive measures to pay landowners who have been waiting for years to be compensated by their own government. The perception now is that there is a selective appropriation of funds to compensate some individuals, but not others who continue to stand in a long line and wait for land compensation.

Keep it clean and green

IT seems that even on the islet of Managaha, the government cannot enforce its 1989 anti-littering law. With hundreds of tourists visiting the NMI’s most popular destination each day, there are now mounds of cigarette butts that litter Managaha’s famous white beaches. And how do the poisons they produce affect the wildlife that occupies the sands, the water and the reefs?

Thank goodness for the Marianas Visitors Authority for bringing attention to these problems and spending resources to beautify and protect NMI tourist sites.

Then and now, the NMI’s responsibilities are clear: preserve and protect the environment, including flora and fauna, with proper land-management policies to ensure that future generations can enjoy the beauty and open spaces of their islands.