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Leepan welcomes suggestions regarding AMP bill

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RATHER than criticizing his proposal to let the CNMI take over the management of American Memorial Park, Rep. Joseph Leepan T. Guerrero is urging members of the community to share their recommendations.

Guerrero’s House Bill 21-119 will mandate the governor to ask the federal government to transfer the administration of AMP to the CNMI government.

Guerrero said he strongly believes that the  CNMI government can protect and maintain the park.

So that community members will get involved in the legislation, he said he will conduct public hearings. “I want the community to support the bill and we need their input,” he added. “But we also need to act on it, expeditiously.”

He said there are no “foreign investors” involved in his bill. “The only ‘investor’ here is the CNMI government. We need to protect the park ourselves. We want it for our community.”

Guerrero recently toured the park and took pictures of some of its facilities that appeared neglected. There was litter and overgrown vegetation and the bell in the bell tower was missing, he added.

The park is not maintained well, Guerrero said. “So those who have concerns about my bill, I welcome their input. But it’s about time that we  assume responsibility for our park.”

 

Pieces of litter can be seen at the American Memorial Park pavilion.

He noted that Aug. 18 will mark the 42nd anniversary of the park.

“I really believe that the CNMI government can do a better job of protecting and maintaining the park,” he said.

Guerrero said his proposal was discussed during a meeting of the Governor’s Economic Advisory Council.

It can be managed through a private-public partnership, he added, referring to the park.

Section 5 (f) of U.S. Public Law 95-348 requires the U.S. secretary of the Treasury to transfer the administration of the park to the CNMI “at such time as the governor, acting pursuant to legislation enacted in accordance with sections 5 and 7 or Article II of the Constitution of the CNMI, requests such a transfer.”

The park consists of an amphitheater, a visitor center, a court of honor, tennis courts, a beach pavilion, restrooms and a sprawling park with path walks north of Garapan.

Guerrero said the area is an ideal venue for the signature cultural events of the CNMI such as the Flame Tree Arts Festival and the Taste of the Marianas, as well as sports events like the Xterra, the Saipan Marathon and the Saipan Fishing Derby.

The park can also host school activities, graduations, plays and concerts and serve as the center for the  cultural activities of the island, he added.

 

The grass at  American Memorial Park needs to be maintained, Rep.  Leepan Guerrero said.

 

Photos by Rep.  Leepan Guerrero

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