Speaker Simina Heads Congressional Delegation to the 10th State and National Leadership Conference in Kosrae

Tofol, Kosrae. [Congress PIO]. April 14, 2017.  Speaker Wesley W. Simina headed a delegation from the Congress of the Federated States of Micronesia to the 10th State and National Leadership Conference (SNLC) held in the State of Kosrae from March 18th and 20th.

The Speaker’s delegation was comprised of the following Members and staff: the two representatives of Kosrae State – Senator Alik L. Alik and Senator Paliknoa K. Welly, along with Senator Robson Romolow, Senator David W. Panuelo and Senator Esmond Moses and staffed by the following Congress staffers Alik J. Jackson and Manuel Yoma.

The Honorable Carson Sigrah, Lt. Governor, Kosrae State, welcomed the Principals to the State of Kosrae on the occasion of the 10th SNLC and thanked them for taking the time to participate in the Conference.

The SNLC is the conference that gathers the heads of the five governments, the President and the four Governors, for dialogue on economic and social development for the Nation.  Outcomes of the conference are usually the directions upon which the governments base their roadmaps.

The two-day Conference in Kosrae covered critical issues for the economic and social development for the Nation, with issues ranging from:  World Bank fiber optic cable project, to a revisit of the tax reform. Also discussed were issues on:  international ship and port facility security;  NCDs or non-communicable diseases;  and medical insurance under MiCare among many others.

During the conference on the World Bank-funded Fiber Optic Project, Speaker Simina voiced his concerns on the implications of FSM not meeting certain conditions of the World Bank grants by June 30, 2017, with the possibility thereafter that the contractor may discontinue if FSM defaulted on its payments thus jeopardizing the projects to Yap, Chuuk and Kosrae. To address the issue the 10thSNLC expressed its support to take the next steps to meet the project disbursement conditions before the deadline. Yap expressed its hope that the scheduled completion of the Chuuk-Yap Fiber Optic Project will remain at December 2017, in time for the 2018 Micro-Games which Yap State will be hosting.

Discussions on the national issues led to the final directions on major issues and the adoption of seven resolutions:

Resolution 001 – To urge the National Government to seek all proper means to sustain the Air Nauru flights to Kosrae;

Resolution 002 – To Endorse the Establishment of a Diagnostic Health Facility as Remedy to the Referral System and to Support Health and Man-Power Development Programs, National Legislative Measures and an effective Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs) Monitoring and Surveillance System;

Resolution 003 – In support of the FSM’s World Bank funded ICT Projects and immediate action to meet the project disbursement conditions;

Resolution 004 – To urge the National Government to develop alternative options to reform the Tax System of the Federated States of Micronesia;

Resolution 005 – Reaffirming the mandate for all governments to collaborate on available financial resources in light of unmet needs;

Resolution 006 – To urge the National Government through its appropriate departments and agencies to regularly invite input and recommendations from the state counterparts to ensure that the States and National priorities are clearly aligned for the betterment of our Nation; and

Resolution 007 – To request that the State and National Leadership of the Federated States of Micronesia establish and adapt a tracking system on all issues, discussions and recommendations at the conclusion of the Conference Agenda for reference and update in future State & National Leadership Conferences.

In reference to SNLC Resolution 002, the National Government had informed the Principals of the 10th SNLC that the FSM Congress has already endorsed the National ODA priority projects, one of which is a Diagnostic Facility for the FSM to be presented to Donors at the next Donors Meetings tentatively scheduled for May-June, 2017.

The signing of the 10th SNLC Communiqué and the resolutions on March 20th wrapped up the two-day conference in the States of Kosrae.

Chairman of the 10th SNLC, Lyndon H. Jackson, Governor of the State of Kosrae, thanked the Principals for their active participation in the discussion and for the successful outcomes. The Honorable Governor Johnson Elimo of the State of Chuuk requested and was agreed to by all Parties that Chuuk will host the 11th SNLC with a tentative date to be set during the summer.

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