Kilili: EDA awards $6m for PSS Technical Education Center

Sep 23, 2021

Congressman Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan thanked EDA Assistant Secretary Alejandra Castillo for the Biden administration’s award of five Yutu recovery grants this year. After Sablan and Castillo met today EDA announced a sixth grant of $6 million for the technical and career education center at Marianas High School. This brings the total of EDA awards for Super Typhoon Yutu recovery to $94 million. Of seven applications from the Marianas for EDA help the Trump administration only agreed to one.

WASHINGTON, DC – The Public Schools System has been awarded a grant of $6 million for construction of a technical and career education center at Marianas High School. Congressman Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan said he received word of the award shortly after meeting today with the Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development, Alejandra Castillo. The PSS grant is the last of seven applications from the Commonwealth with the Economic Development Administration for Super Typhoon Yutu recovery projects. EDA has now awarded $93,891,034.

“PSS has waited for over two years for this grant decision,” Congressman Sablan said. “So, I thank Assistant Secretary Castillo for taking action today. And I thank President Biden’s administration for the six long-awaited grants awarded this year.”

Funding for the EDA recovery grants and eligibility for the Marianas was included in U.S. Public Law 116-20 in June 2019 at Congressman Sablan’s request. Within a few months, Commonwealth agencies had submitted seven grant applications. But the Trump administration failed to act. Only one application—$10.7 million for the Northern Marianas College—received approval.

“Congressional office staff met with the incoming Biden administration right after the November election to flag the long delay in these Yutu grants,” Sablan said. “Once President Biden was sworn in, we finally started getting help.

“All the Commonwealth’s applications for Yutu recovery grants from EDA have now been awarded,” the Congressman added.

Applicant

Project

Date Requested

Date Awarded

Amount

Northern Marianas College

Workforce Development and Training Center

7/3/19

12/16/20

$10,681,796

President Biden sworn in – January 20, 2021

Office of the Governor

Garapan Revitalization Infrastructure

12/16/19

2/4/21

$11,177,918

Northern Marianas College

Cooperative Research, Extension, and Education Services Center

12/17/19

2/11/21

$13,190,280

Northern Marianas Technical Institute

Workforce Training Facility Construction Project

8/14/19

2/18/21

$10,324,264

Office of the Governor

Sports and Cultural Tourism Enhancement Project

12/22/19

6/3/21

$21,160,000

Department of Finance

Department of Finance Economic Resiliency Center

2/4/20

8/30/21

$19,630,360

Public School System

Career and Technical Education Center

9/10/19

9/23/21

$6,000,000

Total awarded from U.S. Public Law 116-20

$93,891,034

The Economic Development Administration also granted the Commonwealth Utility Corporation $1.7 million from the Yutu recovery funds for a court-ordered water filtration system on Saipan.

PSS plans to match the $6 million grant from EDA with another $6 million of Community Development Block Grant funds, also provided by Congress in USPL 116-20. The new technical and career training facility at the high school is expected to increase the pool of skilled, U.S. workers in the Marianas to offset dependence on a foreign workforce and provide higher paying jobs for PSS graduates.

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