June 27, 2011
|Tinian Dynasty ©2008 W. L. Doromal|
Regarding the Tinian Dynasty Hotel and Casino's inability to pay taxes including back taxes in totaling over $30 million, the Governor's Office and CNMI Rep. Ramon Basa issued some rather questionable statements.
Press Secretary Angel Demapan appeared to excuse the violation of nonpayment of taxes saying, “While the administration is cognizant that such an enormous debt can help solve our current cash-flow problems, we also recognize the fact that you can’t squeeze blood from a turnip."
He added, “It’s no myth that we are experiencing challenging times, thus, the administration seeks to explore innovative ways to assist businesses in meeting its obligations to the government.”
I have to wonder why this administration doesn't explore innovative ways to assist businesses in obligations to its employees' payroll. This administration knows that this irresponsible business has consistently failed to pay its foreign workers regularly and for each hour that they have worked. In fact, the Tinian Dynasty owed its nonresident workers weeks of pay. Both the CNMI and U.S. government agencies have been informed of this criminal violation for months, if not years, and yet no action has been taken. It is time to prosecute these employers and recover the money that they owe to the workers.
Rep. Ramon Basa (Covenant-Saipan) stated, “The government tries to promote a business-friendly environment, so that if businesses are struggling, we do our best to help.”
How about promoting a worker-friendly environment? No wonder the CNMI continues to have blatant labor abuses. These government officials appear to exclude the rights of the workers from the equation.