Contract year awarded on maintenance contract to local company

Pacific Federal Management Inc. of Tumon was awarded a $10.37 million indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity modification for the exercise of Option Number One for base operating support services at Naval Base Guam (70%) and Andersen Air Force Base (30%). The work to be performed provides for all tasks and items necessary to accomplish all work to perform ground maintenance and tree trimming services for U.S. military facilities on Guam.  After award of this option, the total cumulative contract value will be $19,78 million.  This option period is from December to November 2021.  No funds will be obligated at time of award, according to a Nov. 24 release from the U.S. Department of Defense, which said “fiscal 2021 operation and maintenance (Navy); and fiscal 2021 O&M (family housing) in the amount of $7,945,193 for recurring work will be obligated on individual task orders issued during the option period.” NAVFAC Marianas is the contracting activity.

PFM was awarded the contract in November 2019 and the contract extends to November 2024 according to Journal files,

The president and owner of PFM is Robert Salas II.


Governor mulling end to NMI price freeze

Gov. Ralph DLG. Torres told the Journal he is considering what action to take on the Northern Mariana Islands price freeze that has been in effect since March.

The Saipan Chamber of Commerce released Nov. 23 a Nov. 12 letter to Torres, asking him to lift the price freeze, which has been in effect since March. In a media briefing on Nov. 25, Torres said he has talked to the attorney general, and any statement or new directives should be out by Dec. 1 — if he decides to take action.

The governor said he hopes that as the new presidential administration moves into the White House, the Northern Mariana Islands will receive more aid from Washington D.C.

“One thing that’s very important is do not take the NMI for granted. We need more resources. Because we are safe and our numbers down, I hope the appropriations for the NMI are not given to anyone else. I think it’s important to understand we put all our resources at the very beginning to safeguard our community, and we need to continue this to save lives,” he said.

Esther Muna, Commonwealth Healthcare Corp.’s CEO, said it might be a while longer for a COVID-19 vaccine to reach the islands, and a date is uncertain at this time.

“At the end of the day, it’s about making sure the vaccines are safe,” she said. “The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is still reviewing data and making sure it’s the right thing to do and that it’s safe… We are continuing to do work on planning for vaccine distribution… Continuing to test and protect the CNMI community.”

Alexander Sablan, vice president of business development for Tan Holdings and a member of the governor’s economic council, talked about the public-private partnerships within the NMI to upgrade tourist sites. He said 21 organizations are part of the project.

“We are going to assist the organizations financially,” he said. “Many don’t have a lot of money to back them, so we’ve set aside a pot of money in an effort to help transform the sites.”

Ultimately, he said, the council is focused on tourism and infrastructure, economic adversity and domestic policy.

Torres also said while there are no new COVID-19 directives for the upcoming holidays, “I want to let everyone know that I know it’s a family gathering — but we are continuing to tell everyone to be vigilant and not put their guards down.

“As a community, we have done our share; we’ve all done an exceptional job. I know it’s time for Thanksgiving, just as we gather as family, we need to try to continue to wear masks as much as we can and ensure hygiene.”


Federal funding around the region

The Northern Mariana Islands will receive the following funding:

  • A Federal Emergency Management Agency award of $22. 6 million to repair Hopwood Middle School’s 24 building campus to Typhoon Yutu pre-disaster condition, through the Public Assistance Alternate Procedures Program for Permanent Work.

According to a Nov. 21 release from the Office of Gregorio “Kilili” Camacho Sablan, the award funds 90% of the $25. 11 million cost and brings the total federal assistance to the NMI Public School System for Yutu recovery to more than $43 million. The NMI has received $228.56 million in FEMA grants for typhoon recovery, the release said.

  • The NMI may now apply for $12 to $16 million in food aid for Marianas familieswith school-age children according to guidance issued Nov. 16. Congress authorized the Pandemic EBT aid for the Marianas in S. Public Law 116-159, enacted on Oct. 1.
  • The U.S. Department of the Interior announced Nov. 24 that $16.7 million in fiscal 2020 Supplement Education Grant assistance has been awarded to the governments of the Federated States of Micronesia and the Marshall Islands.

The SEG assistance as provided for under the implementing legislation of the Compact of Free Association through the U.S. Department of Education supports the education sectors in both countries and was awarded for use during fiscal 2021. The FSM will receive $11.13 million and the Marshall Islands will receive $5.57 million.


Hotel announces introduction of anti-Coronavirus cleaning system

Days Inn by Wyndham Guam announced Nov. 20 new cleaning protocols. The hotel has equipped each guest room with AirDog, an advanced air filtration system; and is sanitizing with Protexus, a top-of-the-line electrostatic sprayer providing next-generation infection control.

The AirDog system is proven to kill viruses as small as 14.6 nanometers, smaller than the Coronavirus that ranges between 60nms and 140nms. 

Days Inn partnered with AirDog creators, Silicon Valley Air Expert Inc., and licensed distributor, John Ko of Hanna Enterprises LLC, to bring this technology to the island. The Days Inn by Wyndham Guam is the first and only hotel on the island to feature the AirDog as a standard room amenity, according to the release

“To elevate sanitization even further, the hotel invested in the Protexus electrostatic sprayers. This electrostatic feature fuses hospital-grade disinfectants onto every surface in its range, providing a fuller coverage, unlike conventional spraying or wiping,” the release said.


Saipan Chamber looking for a list

The chamber announced it is seeking nominations for its Business Person of the Year, and that the annual gala will be held on Jan. 30. mbj