UOG’s business programs get international ranking
The University of Guam School of Business and Public Administration’s Master of Public Administration and Professional Master of Business Administration programs both ranked in the 2021 Eduniversal Best Masters Top 200 ranking worldwide. The MPA ranked at No. 24 and the PMBA at No. 31.
The school received two Palmes of Excellence in Eduniversal’s ranking of Best Master’s and is described as a “good business school with strong regional influence.” UOG is part of the Far East Asia region, according to Eduniversal
Eduniversal is an annual ranking of business schools and universities in more than 150 countries. It ranks 5,500 master’s programs in 200 regional and global rankings, according to its site.
Universal trash collection coming; Guam harbor to be cleaned of derelict vessels
Guam can expect trash collection throughout the island. Gov. Lourdes A. Leon Guerrero said at an Island Beautification Task Force Meeting on April 13, “We will mandate trash pickup for every resident.” The governor said the task force is working with the Guam Solid Waste Authority to “see how much should we charge if we have an increased rate of collections.” Leon Guerrero said her aim is not to have a rate increase. The governor said she is looking at how the fee would be collected and would consider whether to tie it to “either the water or the power.”
Guam’s Environmental Protection Agency will work with federal partners to clear the island’s Harbor of Refuge marina area in Piti and the area adjacent to the Port Authority of Guam of Abandoned Derelict Vessels.
Speaking at an Island Beautification Task Force meeting on April 13, Jesse Cruz, environmental monitoring and analytical services administrator at the Guam EPA said removal of 11 vessels will begin in late May or in July. The project has $600,000 in federal funding for the removal and $200,000 in local funding for off-island disposal of the vessel remains. A U.S. Navy salvage team from Task Force 73 in Singapore will “salvage, demolish and transport” the ADVs to a removal area, and a U.S. EPA contractor will move what is described as HAZMAT or hazardous material to facilities ready for final disposal. The federal funding was obtained through the Department of Defense Innovative Training program. The vessels – which include a longline fishing vessel, a tugboat and a sailboat hull are in various states and were observed in the sea in October 2003. Gov. Lourdes A. Leon Guerrero, who attended the meeting chaired by Lt. Governor Joshua F. Tenorio, asked that EPA ensure that the material be removed off-island as soon as possible.
In other task force news, Michelle C. Razo Lastimoza, deputy administrator at Guam EPA, said the abandoned vehicle removal program administered together with the Mayors Council of Guam has collected 690 vehicles at a cost of $36,949 and shredded more than 4,000 tires. “[Purchase orders] have been distributed for disposal of white goods,” she said. The Mayors Council will be using a system of bins for collection of white goods.
Vincent P. Arriola, director of the Guam Department of Public Works is preparing to issue “a dozen, if not 15” violations this week for derelict properties. DPW is also preparing posters and billboards for an anti-littering/anti-dumping campaign.
Arriola said the owner of the Royal Palms parking lot has been non-responsive. According to Journal files K&D Guam LLC, comprising David Su and a partner acquired the site of what was the Royal Palm Hotel in 2009. The hotel was severely damaged in Guam’s August 1993 earthquake and later demolished. The four-story parking structure remains abandoned but intact on the 18 000-square-meter beachfront property.
The islandwide cleanup is planned for April 24. Guam Waterworks Authority will also hold a fats, oil and grease collection in Dededo at the end of April or beginning of May.
No change foreseen for Guam plans to re-open for tourism
Despite rumors that quarantine for arrivals into Guam will continue after May 1, the Office of the Governor said the “path to half” and plans to re-open are still on track. Krystal Paco-San Agustin, director of communications for the governor told the Journal on April 14, “The goal hasn’t changed at this time.” The “path to half” refers to getting to 50% of the island’s eligible population or 62,500 vaccinated against COVID-19. As of today, there are four COVID patients in Guam Memorial Hospital, which is the most the island has seen in recent weeks, she said. Guam has received no further notifications of COVID variants on-island, Paco-San Agustin said, following seven cases of the so-called California COVID variant detected in March.
In other COVID news, a soldier who was among 12 U.S. army medical staff sent to Saipan to assist with vaccination tested positive April 6, according to an April 12 release from Joint Region Marianas. The soldier – who was fully vaccinated and received a negative COVID test before departing Hawaii, is in isolation. The rest of the team is being sent to Guam for “potential mission support.”
The Guam Hotel & Restaurant Association has announced that the governor’s vaccination committee and Reopening Task Force will hold more vaccine clinics at the Hyatt Regency Guam.
Register for available slots from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. on April 14th at vaccine.guamcovid.com
See www.mbjguam.com for other tourism updates.
By the numbers
U.S. Economic Impact Payments:
Guam and the Northern Mariana Islands will play catchup with U.S. mainland states and the U.S. military and begin to distribute from April 12 the $241 million approved for Guam and the $85 million approved for the NMI for economic impact payments.
Fisheries & Maritime Institute grant:
Japan donated $3,700,000 in grant assistance to the Federated States of Micronesia’s Fisheries & Maritime Institute in Yap for a training vessel, training equipment, and upgrades to the institute’s facilities. The institute offers courses in navigation, marine engineering, and fishing technology.
From south to north:
About 330 full-time civilian employees assigned to support Andersen Air Force Base administratively transferred from the U.S. Navy to the U.S. Air Force April 11 through 18 of 44 support functions, according to an April 12 release from Andersen Air Force Base. The functions cover Fire and Emergency Services, Installation Law Enforcement and Physical Security, Contracting, Facility Management, and Logistics and Transportation Services.
Some of the contracting employees are transferring from Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Marianas, according to the 36th Wing’s public affairs office.
Stray dog collection:
Guam has 60,000 dogs.
An estimated 24,500 are thought to be free-roaming and stray.
In March, 64 strays were removed from Tamuning-Tumon-Harmon, with Agana Heights scheduled for stray removal in April.
All villages saw 135 dogs and five cats removed and delivered to Guam Animals in Need.
According to the Guam Department of Agriculture, non-profits plan to assist with sending at least 200 boonie dogs to new homes and rescues/shelters across the U.S. mainland by the end of 2021; 25 puppies were sent off-island April 10, with eight puppies already scheduled for an April 24 departure, according to information from to the Beautification Task Force meeting and the Guam Department of Agriculture.
Warnings from DC and a coming win for Guam’s mass transit
Michael F.Q. San Nicholas, Guam’s delegate to Congress, held a press conference on April 13, regarding federal relief in Guam.
San Nicholas said that while the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance has been extended until September, a $300 child tax credit is in the works for July.
However, he said, the island is in danger of an economic downturn if Guam’s tourism source markets don’t get on track with vaccinations like Guam, and if there are no more relief packages.
“If PUA sunsets in September, and we are not in full-recovery mode, we are going to have a very serious economic problem with resources drying up federally and with our local economy unable to pick up the slack…,” he said. “We are skating on thin ice.”
San Nicolas said the island must prepare. “Our community needs to take the resources that we’re going to be receiving over the next six months and really, prudently put those to use and do so with the understanding that, as things improve, we are going to be transitioning away from federal relief the way we have traditionally been receiving it over the course of this pandemic. The island is going to open and we’re going to have to get ourselves self-sustaining within the next six to nine months.”
The delegate also urged Gov. Lourdes A. Leon Guerrero and the Guam Visitors Bureau to continue exploring travel bubbles with tourist markets, like Taiwan.
He said public transportation is important in getting people back to work on-island and unveiled a nearly $100 million plan with the Guam Regional Transit Authority to modernize the Hagatna transfer station and GRTA offices, increase the bus fleet from 24 operational busses to 100 and increase and reconceptualize the 10 bus shelters on island to 100.
San Nicholas will be back on island at the beginning of May, he said.
CHC releases violation list and BIBA health eating program news
The Northern Mariana Islands Commonwealth Healthcare Corp.’s Environmental Health Disease Prevention closed four facilities in violation of health and sanitary regulations in March.
They are Lao Market and Pacific Star Wholesale, both in Chalan Kanoa; Green Consume Market in As Lito and Family Store in Garapan.
The CHC’s EHDP also launched inspections for the BIBA Healthy Restaurant Program during March and issued certificates to multiple restaurants in Saipan, Rota and Tinian.
The CHCC, in partnership with the CNMI Nutrition Council, manages the Biba Healthy Restaurant Program. The program aims to increase the availability of clearly marked, nutritious food at local restaurants. The program’s mission is to make the healthy choice the easy choice at NMI restaurants. Nutrition guidelines have been developed for restaurants and caterers to ensure healthy choices are available for CNMI families when eating outside the home.
Call (670) 236-8719 or send an email to [email protected] to inquire about the program and request an application. The BIBA website is https://bibamenu.wixsite.com The release and full lists of violations and BIBA program participants can be found at http://www.chcc.gov.mp/pressrelease.html. mbj