Jul 24, 2022


$25.5m earmarks passed

The House of Representatives okayed Wednesday 12 of my requests for Marianas community projects – worth $25.5 million. The earmarks were included in H.R. 8294, a “minibus” package of six Fiscal Year 2023 spending bills.

In the Transportation-Housing and Urban Development appropriation, the Commonwealth’s Department of Public Works receives $10 million for four road projects:

The Commonwealth Office of Transit Authority would receive $8.4 million for three transit projects:

The Agriculture-Rural Development appropriation includes four of my requests worth $6.2 million to support public libraries and access to healthcare in the Marianas:

The Interior-Environment spending bill includes $911,302 I requested for the Commonwealth Utilities Corporation. The funding would pay for a comprehensive wastewater treatment analysis and feasibility study for the islands of Rota and Tinian.

All Republicans voted against the bill. H.R. 8294 now goes to the Senate for consideration.

2022 Report to Constituents arrives

The biannual Report to Constituents is now being delivered to post office boxes in the Marianas and is available online. Published three-quarters of the way through each two-year congressional term the Report highlights the work of your congressional office. The American Rescue Plan Act takes center stage in the 2022 Report. The Rescue Plan provided $1,400 economic impact payments to 33,719 residents of the Marianas, pumped $283 million into our economy through unemployment assistance, and kept the Commonwealth government afloat with a $482 million grant for operations. In Congress only Democrats voted for this historic legislation that has been essential to maintain the life of our islands during the COVID pandemic.

Listening to veterans' leaders

This Tuesday, I sat down with leaders of various Veteran Service Organizations, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and fellow members of the House Veterans Affairs Committee to discuss issues facing veterans across America. The conversation centered on the PACT Act, a bill I cosponsored, that will help veterans, who were exposed to burn pits and other sources of toxins during their service, get medical care for cancers and related diseases. The Veteran Service Organizations thanked the House for passing the PACT Act. We all share the hope the Senate will now promptly advance the bill to the President’s desk.

Marianas research guide online                       

From the historical works of German Governor Georg Fritz to collections of ancient Chamorro poetry to the modern scholarship of Scott Russell, the Library of Congress is rich with materials of value to students, teachers, and the general public in the Marianas. And now that material is more accessible. At my urging the Library’s American Folklife Center has published an online guide to help researchers uncover collections related to the Marianas. This is the same research guide the Folklife Center has already prepared for every other state and territory and was added to the Library of Congress website this week. View the guide here.

Tebuteb addresses Marianas hunger

Mr. Tom Tebuteb, representing the Empty Vessel Ministry, was invited by House Rules Committee Chairman Jim McGovern to talk about what is being done to help people in the Marianas who need food aid.

VA to hire Marianas social worker

Veterans Affairs will hire a full-time permanent Licensed Clinical Social Worker dedicated to Northern Marianas veterans. The job announcement is now posted at

$32.5 m. approved for NMI food stamp study, pilot program

Members of the U.S. armed services would receive a 1.7% pay raise under terms of the FY13 Department of Defense Appropriations Act.


  • Regional Ocean Partnership and Data Sharing
  • Humanities Collections and Reference Resources
  • Energizing Insular Communities
  • FEMA Public Assistance for Safe Opening and Operating of Schools 
  • FEMA 2021 Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) Program
  • Emergency Rural Health Care Funds
  • Indigenous Communities Program (EDA)


Public comments:


  • H.R. 8294 - Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, Agriculture, Rural Development, Energy and Water Development, Financial Services and General Government, Interior, Environment, Military Construction, and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Act, 2023 (passed, 220-207)
  • H.R. 7693 - National Park Foundation Reauthorization Act of 2022 (passed, 397-22)
  • H.R. 7025 - Advancing Human Rights-Centered International Conservation Act of 2022 (passed, 379-43)


  • H.R. 6933 - Cost-Share Accountability Act of 2022
  • H.R. 5118 - Wildfire Response and Drought Resiliency Act
  • H.R. 7361 - National Weather Service Communications Improvement Act