Marianas Variety

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    Monday, October 14, 2019-8:41:43A.M.

     

     

     

     

     

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Landowner asks DPW to pave road near his house

JOSE C. Sablan Jr. of San Vicente said the Department of Public Works should pave the dirt road near his house because funds have already been appropriated for it. But DPW Secretary James Ada on Wednesday told Variety that there is no funding specifically appropriated for the road.

Moreover, Ada said, DPW does not have any authorization to divert public funds.

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Jose C. Sablan Jr. of San Vicente points to the dirt road that leads to his house.  Photo by Bryan Manabat

“We don’t do that. DPW does not have authority to divert funds appropriated by legislation and use them for another project,” he added.

Sablan said he has been repeatedly asking DPW to “fix the road for more than 20 years now.”

He said the dirt road is very dangerous for driving, and “it gets worse when it rains.”

Sablan said he also talked about it with the governor and the lt. governor during the campaign season last year. “I gave them the map and everything because the law says before you give out land, the government has to build roads and other things in the area,” he added.

Sablan lives way up Bentana Drive in San Vicente across from the elementary school.

Ada said 15 years ago, there was a local appropriation authored by then-Rep. David Apatang who is now the Saipan mayor, for paving half of the road that leads to Sablan’s property.

Ada said additional funding must be appropriated to pave the rest of the road.

He said he went to Sablan’s home on Oct. 3 to tell him that “unless there is a letter from the Legislature that directs us to do so, we cannot divert any funds to pave the road near his house.”