Nonresident Worker Bill Passes CNMI House

April 1, 2016

The CNMI House unanimously passed a bill to charge nonresident workers $50 for an identification card.

Nonresident workers in the CNMI are regulated by USCIS, not the CNMI Department of Labor. They already pay excessive fees for their U.S. permits.

This appears to be another scheme to make money off the backs of the legal, nonresident workers who make up about 90% of the CNMI's private labor force. The collected funds are to be used "to enforce rules and regulations pertaining to non-immigrant workers."

I doubt that this bill is even constitutional. Shame on every lawmaker who voted for this bill.

The Marianas Variety quoted comments I made in 2010 when the legislature proposed this scheme and the same remarks apply today:
In March 2010, human rights advocate and former Rota educator Wendy Doromal criticized CNMI Public Law 17-1 for its provision that required foreigners to register with DOL. 
She said it was a blatant attempt by the CNMI government to maintain control over “the disenfranchised underclass.” 
“They want to continue to fill their coffers on the backs of the foreign contract workers, their families and other foreign nationals,” she said referring to the CNMI government. 
She noted that since Nov. 28, 2009, the federal government has had authority over CNMI immigration and the foreign national workforce, not the commonwealth government or its Department of Labor. 
She said there was no other local or state government in the U.S. that required foreign nationals to have an identification card, adding that those powers fall under federal law.


Anonymous said...

This is not constitutional, lets see if the Gov. signs this, especially since all his brothers are lawyers and should see through this.
If they want this to 'stick' they would have to apply this to ALL that are employed regardless of nationality or Citizenship.
Maybe then this wouls apply BUT i doubt seriously if this would then be passed as the local population would make much noise.

I am slightly surprised by ED Probst and others from the minoity block that voted for this.

It is too bad that we don't hanve any "real" reporters that would at least go and interview those that voted on this (and other controversial laws)to get their reasoning on these stupid actions.

Wendy Doromal said...

Did Ed Probst actually vote for this bill? Was he present for the vote? I cannot believe he would vote for this!

Anonymous said...

Wendy from what I glanced through and on a comment, the whol minority block voted for this, on comments a commenter was also going condemning Probst and others for voted for this.

I did not read so closely as my eyesight is failing, need new glasses also.
Maybe look back in MV archives. I could not believe he would, that was surprising.
It would be good if you could clarify, hopefully he has not gone over to the dark side as most all do, with few exceptions.

Wendy Doromal said...

The article quoted above said,"House Bill 19-146 introduced by Minority Leader Ramon A. Tebuteb was passed unanimously by all 19 members present." Were there some who were absent or is 19 everyone?

Anonymous said...

There are 20.

Anonymous said...

Perfectly legal. And 2019 will be here before you know it.

Anonymous said...

CW application fees are to be paid for by the applicant, which is the employer, USCIS does not charge the beneficiary anything.