Marianas Variety

Last updateWed, 21 Aug 2019 12am

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    Tuesday, August 20, 2019-9:51:15P.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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Rep. Roman Benavente wants DLNR to collect Managaha landing fees

REPRESENTATIVE Roman C. Benavente will introduce a measure that would transfer the authority to collect the Managaha landing fees from the Department of Public Lands to the Department of Lands and Natural Resources.

Roman Benavente

House Bill 21-41 also proposes to raise the fee from $5 to $10 and include the payment of land compensation claims as permissible use of the fees.

The bill’s key provision states: “A land fee of ten dollars is imposed on each non-resident passenger who disembarks on Managaha Island by a commercial carrier from any point of embankment in the Commonwealth and traversing over the waters of the commonwealth. The fee is imposed as a license, as such term is used in 1 CMC Section 2803(a), to pass over the waters and submerged lands of the Commonwealth. Each commercial carrier engaged in the transport of passengers to Managaha Island is charged with the duty to keep a daily record of all non-resident passengers to Managaha Island.”

DLNR, the bill added, “shall collect the fee under this article from all commercial carriers. The Secretary of Finance shall submit a report on all landing fees collected under this article at the end of each month to the Chairman of the Saipan and Northern Islands Legislative Delegation.”

In an interview on Thursday, Benavente said DLNR should be the recipient of Managaha landing fee.

He said the Legislature know little about the “flow” of Managaha fees under DPL’s watch. There are “some gray areas” in the flow of those fees, he added.

Ask for comment, DPL Secretary Marianne Concepcion-Teregeyo said she has not seen the bill yet but she noted that DPL’s authority to promulgate rules pertaining to right-of-way was transferred to the Department of Public Works by Public Law 20-52.

She said DPW, like DPL, is under the executive branch as well, “so the transfer is acceptable.”