The Federal Emergency Management Agency has officially awarded over $38.6 million for the rebuilding of Northern Marianas College due to damage it sustained from Super Typhoon Yutu.
The funding covers the NMC As Terlaje’s campus’ Buildings A to W, the NMC Gymnasium, campus-wide exterior components, emergency protective measures, and other contents, as well as buildings on the NMC Tinian campus.
“NMC was among the hardest hit areas by Super Typhoon Yutu, and we have worked extremely hard in our planning and application for funding since the beginning of the recovery,” said Gov. Ralph DLG Torres. “With this latest funding approval, we can continue the work of rebuilding our college so that our Proa family and future students can have a great place to learn, work, and grow. We look forward to building new school buildings, repair damaged facilities, and create a college campus that will have the potential to be one of the best in the Pacific.”
The project worksheets approved by FEMA include construction and replacement of buildings, classrooms, and facilities on the NMC As Terlaje campus on Saipan and the NMC campus on Tinian.
“Our administration’s partnership with FEMA is an important one, and it shows what can be accomplished when we work together for our people. …This is great news for the Commonwealth, and together, we will continue our work in building a stronger NMC and a stronger Marianas,” said Torres.
Among the many persons he thanked for this grant award were FEMA Region IX administrator Robert J. Fenton Jr., who is also currently serving as the senior official performing the duties of the FEMA administrator in Washington, D.C.; Virginia Villagomez, governor’s authorized representative to FEMA for Super Typhoon Yutu; the CNMI Public Assistance team led by Patrick Guerrero, NMC board of regents chair Charles Cepeda, and interim president Frankie Eliptico “for their work with our administration to push these projects forward.”
Eliptico said the funds from FEMA’s Public Assistance program will help rebuild the campus and give the college an opportunity to build brand new facilities that are modern, typhoon-resilient, technologically advanced, and energy-efficient.
Villagomez said the CNMI will continue its work on typhoon-related recovery. “This is certainly welcoming news for NMC and for the CNMI. The Torres-Palacios administration will continue its commitment to rebuild homes, schools, and public facilities, while prioritizing mitigation projects that will protect life and property in our community thus strengthen and improve our mitigation efforts throughout the Commonwealth. We are grateful for all the efforts that FEMA has driven to secure this approval and as partners, we look forward to successfully completing projects benefiting our community,” said Villagomez.