CNMI Lawmakers Pre-File Bills For 18th Legislature
SAIPAN, CNMI (Saipan Tribune, Jan. 18, 2013) – Rep. Felicidad Ogumoro (R-Saipan) pre-filed a bill presenting a question to voters whether to convene another constitutional convention to propose amendments to the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands’ Constitution, as well as a legislative initiative changing the 25 percent blood quantum requirement to only "at least some degree" of Chamorro or Carolinian blood or a combination of these, in order to be considered a person of Northern Marianas descent and therefore can own land in the CNMI.
Ogumoro's House Bill 18-5 on the conventional convention and House Legislative Initiative 18-1 on Article 12 are among the 15 bills, local bills, resolutions, joint resolutions and initiative pre-filed since at least a day after Monday's inaugural session of the 18th Legislature. Article 12 is the land alienation provision of the CNMI Constitution.
These are in addition to the rules of procedures resolution that the House adopted during the day of the inauguration. That same day, Speaker Joseph Deleon Guerrero (IR-Saipan) and other leadership members pre-filed a resolution impeaching Gov. Benigno R. Fitial for 18 allegations of corruption, felony and neglect of duty.
Ogumoro also pre-filed House Joint Resolution 18-1, requesting the U.S. Congress to return to the people of Northern Marianas descent the waters and submerged lands surrounding the CNMI from the mean low tide mark to 200 miles.
"The waters and submerged lands rightfully belong to persons of Northern Marianas descent. Therefore, we must fight hard for the return of the 200 miles of submerged lands and waters and nothing less," Ogumoro said in her speech during the inauguration.
The former vice speaker also pre-filed HB 18-6, establishing a Northern Marianas Descent Institute, a non-profit public corporation for persons of Northern Marianas descent that will establish a protocol and job training program.
The other pre-filed measures include:
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