$3 Million Infrastructure Grant

FSM Receives $3 Million Compact Infrastructure Maintenance Grant

Palikir, Pohnpei (Dept. of Foreign Affairs): August 14, 2008 - On Friday, August 8, 2008, a ceremony was held at the President's Office to commemorate the acceptance of a $3 million Compact of Free Association Public Infrastructure sector grant. The grant will enable the state governments of the FSM to implement small-scale infrastructure projects for health and education facilities.

In brief remarks, US Ambassador to the FSM Miriam Hughes noted that the grant "opens a small but significant window", referring to US efforts at installing a more effective delivery system that gives the states more flexibility on how to use the funding. "We aim to empower Micronesian officials to fulfill with pride the most basic obligation of governance-to anticipate, define and fulfill the needs of your citizens."

Secretary of Foreign Affairs Lorin S. Robert gave responding remarks, noting the flexibility of Compact funding and expressing hope that "the same favorable consideration can again be accorded to projects that meet the development aspiration of the FSM." Secretary Robert highlighted the importance of joint cooperation by the FSM and US Governments, as well as the importance of US presence in the FSM to appreciate in-country challenges and limitations.

Each of the four FSM states will be allocated $750,000 of the grant for projects directly related to: 1) construction, repair, renovation or rehabilitation of education and health facilities; 2) provision of potable water to education and health facilities; and 3) public safety. Each state is required to provide a listing and description of projects to be funded by the grant.

Witnesses at the grant award ceremony included Vice President Alik L. Alik, Governor of Pohnpei State John Ehsa and his Chief of Staff, Isonahnken Ihlen Joseph, Secretary of Finance and Administration Finley S. Perman, Secretary of Education Casiano Shoniber, Secretary of Transportation, Communications & Infrastructure Francis Itimai, Acting Secretary of Health and Social Affairs Jane Elymore, SBOC Director Fabian Nimea, President's Chief of Staff Kasio Mida, FSM Project Management Unit Manager Jack Yakana and US Embassy Staff Gary Bloom.


  • What I find most interesting about this piece of news from the FSMPIO is that when the grant was thought to be lost, everybody was screaming like a stuck pig about who was to blame for losing this money. Now that it has been confirmed that the grant has actually been made, and that each state will receive $750,000 for infrastructure repairs to schools and dispensaries, not a peep about who to thank for the continued pursuit of the funding.

    Does anybody have any thought about whether this money will be used for its intended purposes, or whether it will go the way of so much other funding, into turkey tails and bags of rice to buy votes in the upcoming elections?
  • Here's a Quote by US JEMCO Chairman from the April 16-17 2008 JEMCO Meeting in San Fran or California

    (US)"We talked about infrastructure last year as well, and had these same discussions. Two years ago we said that if we're not going to build new buildings, let's fix the things that need immediate repairs. So we have a grant here for infrastructure for $3 million to fix up schools, to get the process moving. This hasn't been discussed, but there are a number of projects like catchment tanks and toilet replacments, covered walkway replacements, roof replacements, etc. This is $750K for each state to go out and administer these projects at the state level for repairs - to deal with small requests. We're asking that this be limited to Health and Education problems, addressing urgent needs. There's no need for professional designs for a water tank. We'd like to get this signed quickly. This is 2007 ungranted money that hasn't been obligated but has been allocated by JEMCO. We'd like for you to accept this quickly and start using it. It can be administered by the state governments, just give us a list of what you're going to do with it."

    My kokonut head is still trying to figure out why our National Government took so long to have this infrastructure money released? Did our National Government just recently finish the list or is it because of Nickolao Pula's July 9, 2008 letter and the US Congress/OIA letter?

    Sarem Chuuk,

    I am not sure if it's related to this $3 million but renovation and repairs for the Neauo Elementary School, Mwan Elementary School and an elementary school in Mesa, Fefan Island as well as thee Chuuk Hospital Fefan had started last Friday or Saturday. The whole roofing for the Neauo Elementary school is already finished & the Mwan Elementary school is almost done. The only thing is the people doing the repairs are from the US Navy and soon the US Navy medical ship - Mercy is soon coming to Chuuk.

    Perhaps someone or the FSM PIO can enlighten us?
  • Glad to hear that there are repairs being made to the schools. Hopefully, all of the money will go to repairs, including dispensaries. Catchments are also important, especially if connected to schools, as a source of drinking water.

    Perhaps it is not so important to find out the reasons for the delay. Instead, I would hope that the focus going forward would be on proper accountability and making sure the expenditures are for the projects for which the money was intended.
  • State Governments!!!. Please let us know how and what projects are you using this money on. I noticed from Kokonut head that some schools in Chuuk has or are in the process of renovation right now. Please don’t use those projects as target projects for this grant and turn around and use the money for something else. Fix our health infrastructures and Schools as this money is intended for.
    Will somebody from any island states update us on the progress from each States. I’m just one concerned citizen, thank you.
  • Will somebody from the inside, especially state gov't circle, keep track of the 750k.
  • Sarem, way to keep us informed of our priorities. Thanks man. I just hope and wish this source is put to good use and accounted for transparently. Because if the money is not used as it is allocated for then we must have a whole lot of thick skin. It should be given close scrutiny and monitored. We all know that we have made so much mistakes in the past and we can't afford to make it now that we've been watched closely. Let's do it!
  • How do they prioritize which schools should be renovated first? As an outer islander, I am dementedly hilarious that it looks like the money will be run out without reaching the outer island schools!

    The equal distribution of the grants to the four States is a pain in the ass! What the hell they came up with such a distribution figure! Kosrae is very lucky because it has few schools while the other States will not have enough to complete the needed renovations of their schools!

    What a cracked-head idea!
  • Polou, I am sure the americans do not appreciate your calling their grants a cracked-head idea. Why not you put your money where your filthy mouth is?

    Folks, next $3M Infrastructure Grant is on Polou! Please thank him when you get a chance!
  • ION:

    Before lidding your rascally contaminated big mouth, you got to understand that the U.S was formed on the principle of equality for all! Who cares if they are not appreciative to my comment as they are the initiators of Freedom of Expression!

    Ion, you are a misinformed numskull and DO NOT KNOW ANYTHING! The $3 millions you are expecting is the same we are talking about! Take the $750,000 x 4 (States) = $3,000,000.00! Got that! IN YOUR FILTHY FACE!!
  • Polou, you excel in simple arithmetics. But, you must trust me when I say that you're confused and stupid.
  • ION:

    I don't trust anybody especially from cracked-head like you!
  • Polou i don't know where you got the idea that the "money will run out before it reaches the outer island". It don't work like that and of course the principle of eguality for all goes along with such an undertaking. Priorities are set from needs and wants regardless of main island or outer island. So, if your island is in dire need of maintenance or improvement, it should be among first benefactors or somewhere up there. It is not hard to understand and have faith given our many problems and that the fact that we are been watchd by higher authorities (we all know who) every step of the way. You and ION especially you need to stop that childish act because sometimes it is just hard to understand such personalities. Peace out brothers!!
  • Good for you. I don't trust myself neither. But please do let someone else help you.
  • Slide, Polou is also angry because a state like Kosrae's getting the same cut compared to the rest of the state. I had to humble him since the grants/funds are not from his own parents, but rather from a foreign country. He sounded like a spoiled brat who needed my help.
  • Here we go again. Disbursing money amongst the states using elementary-mathematics. When will you people ever think of NEEDS? Pathetic!!!!!!
  • LOL@ION. He sure sounded like one and very ignorant of what truthful (atleast) info. others have to feed him. Arrogant i'd say but sure is in need of help from the likes of you and he'd slowly pop out from his little cozy hole.
  • ION and Polou, tori ami meinisin chon Chuuk, ami mei aea ach ei forum ne akkaporaus.

    Ach tingor ngeni kemi meinisin, ika ouse mochen oupwe sefani met ooreniach me noomw mei fakkun auchea, ewe men suufon. Enlet sia men fakkun noninen ren met ei oua fori non ei fansoun, ese fakkun net ngeniei ika seni ami oua kon sinenap oua fen nien namanam tekia, iei ouse chiwen mwo ekieki pwe ei forum esap ew ami nenien koum fengen, okokoun, eitangawei aramas ese nifinifin, esikesik non poraus, pun enlet ika oua pusin re-play ngeni kemi met kei oue akapasa non ei forum, oupwe fakkun efisi saw are maakus ren.

    Ngang won inisi, ua men fakkun efisi riaffoun ach ei sise chiwen sine mirit ach sipwe saw. Epwe pwata? Amo mei tufich sipwe mommot fengen meinisin iwe sia poporaus pwe ewe tawe met kei oua efisi ningeringerin oua chok aparasa fetan ei nein aramas ese nifinifin. A usun ekan chon sakau are punas rese chiwen efisi ar saw pun rese chiwen tongeni control ar ekiek.

    Oupwe chechemeni pwe ei forum, ese foruta pwe nenien ami oupwe akokoun, esit, ottek fengen, eita ngawei emon ese wor met oupwe tongeni support ngeni ami eitangawei iten ewe aramas. Pun met kei oue pwarano non ei forum, oue esine ngenikich pwe aami oue etto seni family mei namanam tekia, mei mochen oupwe nemenem usun chok ekkewe ra nemenikich mei eriaffou. Ika pwe oue wesewesen nuku pwe ami mei tongeni fori ekkoch ekesiwin non fonuach pwe sipwe tufich ren meinisin, oupwe pwari kemi no, pun sipwe fat, iwe sia angang fengen. Ika met? Nge ei nane mwe e, are nanen punas chok, ese i fakkun namot.Ouse mochen ousapw kon asawa kich. Mei eoch sipwe angang fengen non mosonoson. Ami ekkena oua nuku pwe oua kon nien sinenap fosun Merika, enlet oupwe kaeo sefan ach kewe eerenien mosonoson, nikitu, engino, sechafi, sufon, tekisoson pun epwe namot ami sine. Tipachem me sinenap rese wewe fengen.Usun chok emon epwe era mei smart nge ese wise, ese namot. Ika met? Itach chon Chuuk mei ngaw, sipwe siwini ngeni mei ochupor.
  • The money is spent on only a few schools that are believed to have community support. In that, the land right is given to the government and the community people support the school by lending hands whenever necessary. I'm proud to say that the school in Mesa on Fefan is one of those schools under renovation by the USA team. I am in support of the choices the Dept. of Education made among the schools, knowing they are selected from among many because not all the communities make efforts to show the schools are important for their children. May the rest of the people in Chuuk learn from what they see now. The USA means business. They can help anytime they see their taxpayers money are well spent. Who wouldn't?
  • I am thankful to read and learn about this funding for infrastructure in our FSM States. One main concern is regarding the equal amount allocated to all four states. Isn't this funding following the equation on division of money according to population count?

    Thank you,
  • mnukkuk:
    Your referenced formula is from the FSM Congress (whose population data is outdated since the FSM 2000 Census). On the other hand, the subject grants are from OIA of the US Government. We must understand that we are no longer operating under the same circumstances of the first compact.
  • Apparently not Monuk. True dat IS.
  • Slide and ION:

    I do understand that those beneficiaries of the grants will always be the ones with needs. In fact, most of the school buildings in the FSM are eligible under the needy circumstance! However, my earlier post was primarily addressed to the numerous schools in Chuuk as Chuuk has the most schools in the FSM.

    If you consider the number of schools in Chuuk (since all of them need to be renovated), the present costs of construction materials needed to complete the renovation and the cost of shipment to the outer islands and neighboring islands in the lagoon, then you can better understand what I meant by not enough.

    On the other hand, considering the equal amount of the grants to be provided to each of the State, it is definitely clear that Kosrae State which has few schools will benefit more from the grants while the others will not. You can guess that the grants in Chuuk will run out without accomplishing the purpose for all the needy schools.

    Since I am paying the Federal Taxes here in the U.S, I think I have the right to express my concern about my tax money as a tax payer among many FSM citizens who are also contributing to the federal revenues system. So, STUPID ION, don't tell me that I have no say about the grants! I have the same voice as the Americans whose money are being used by the U.S Government to fund the needs of other countries like the FSM.

    Therefore, ION, if you don't pay taxes to the U.S as your parents, then shut the hell and mind your own business!
  • "I have the same voice as the Americans whose money are being used by the U.S Government" ...

    There you have it, the fundamental misconception of our spoiled arrogant immigrants in the USA. No wonder the US House of Representatives are alluding to discontinue immigration privileges of FSM Citizens in the USA. Polou, you need to understand who you are....or change your citizenship. Stop thinking you are all THAT, when the world knows who you really are.

    By the way, we all pay US taxes one way or the other, i.e. purchasing imported Budweiser in local store, but we all know that we are not americans. We are micronesians who are friends to the americans. Trust me.
  • ION:

    When are you gonna understand the fact? Purchasing imported Bud in local stores in the FSM is tax exempted from U.S tax code! That means the tax imposed is FSM tax, not that of U.S! Thus, you are not paying any U.S tax on the commodities imported into the FSM.

    In addition, you got everything dead wrong! Of course, I do understand who I am and I want to reiterate by saying I have the same right and voice as U.S tax payers! It is more appropriate for me to talk on the subject as a tax payer rather than someone who only enjoy receiving without contributing.

    The problem with the fiasco for immigration does not fall right for those who contribute to the federal revenue. It was raised due to the poor performance of our FSM leaders in implementing some provisions in the amended Compact! You need more to digest the facts and stop from falsifying factual information.

    You just show the little knowledge you have when you discuss things!
  • Ok Polou...it is very evident that chuuk has more school houses in comparison to kosrae. The question is i believe, why is there only $750,000.00 allocated to chuuk for renovation, maintenance and the likes for education and primary health when there are more school and pupils? Whatever happened to 'popuation' as main factor in the distribution of money among the four states? With all due respect man but i think you're just playing ignorance. Like IS mentioned "the subject grants are from OIA of the US Government. We must understand that we are no longer operating under the same circumstances of the first compact". We should be thankful that we are atleast getting some money for infrastructure improvement. This is not the very first and it should be fair enough for maintenance and renovation for the needy. I understand your frustration but it would have been better if our past grants in this case education and health were soley expended for what they were allocated for we wouldn't be complaining now. In the meantime, we should be thankful because some of the tax money we are paying are atleas coming back to the island for our use.
  • Slide:

    That's exactly what I was trying to address - how do they (OIA) come up with an unfair distribution formula? This is my only concern. However, things seem to get out of proportion later due to ION's despicable comment addressing me with filthy mouth.
  • Polou, I love you (not romantic love but for you concern about Chuuk) the grants are given to us on their own terms only. Now question ask. $750,000 each or nothing at all. Uncle FSM and FSM Congress have no say on the forlmula. So let's take it. It's better than nothing. The money will be put to proper use by our govts under the watchful eyes of uncle Sam.

    Ai Tong
  • edited August 2008
    Pardon me, Polou, for thinking the profits of Anheuser-Busch is taxable by the IRS. You have persuaded me to respect you as an all american chuukese, with all due American patriotism. Considering your understanding and skills for diplomacy, we must submit to you atop the hegemony while we, your loyal subjects, reserve a sanctuary for one particular rabid stray.
  • The $750K grant per state is deducted from the overall Compact Infrastructure Sector, which is locally budgeted in accordance to the stipulated national formula and monitored by the state and national governments. The reason for the OIA's offering the small projects grants ($3M) is mainly due to the FSM's insufficient efforts to expedite implementation of the Infrastructure Sector, in accordance with the FSM Infrastructure Development Plan(IDP). Please google and read the US-FSM Compact Honolulu meeting minutes of April 2008, to learn more.
  • IS:

    If you are correct that the $3 million grant "is deducted from the overall Compact Infrastructure Sector," then Polou is right that the funds should have been allocated on the same basis as the Compact. After I Google the minutes of the meeting of April 2008 I may have more to say.
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