21 Sep 2011

Impasse on budget issues resolved in CNMI

6:48 am on 21 September 2011

A joint House and Senate committee has broken the budget deadlock in the CNMI.

The eight-member conference committee was able to reach a compromise on the major differences between the House and Senate versions of the $102 million spending bill, including increased funding for education, lawmakers' and leadership accounts, and Rota and Tinian allocations.

The breakthrough comes with less than two weeks to go before the start of the fiscal year on October the 1st.

Among other things, the 29 lawmakers' individual allocation will no longer be "zeroed out" as senators had proposed but will remain at the current level of over $71,000 a year.

The House and Senate leadership accounts are also no longer zeroed out, but will remain at $138,000 each.