The meeting of James Connaughton and the other federal officials with the Commowealth House and Senate is well into its second hour. The meeting started at 11 AM and the federal officials don't have another meeting until 2 PM. I think they're going to be here right up until that next meeting.
Connaughton started the meeting off by explaining the reason for his visit, then he talked a bit about the geology and biology of the area, and then opened up the floor for questions and comments.
I think I'd get in trouble if I repeated some of the things that were said by the elected officials.
I'll just leave it at that.
At 12:15 the federal group was going to leave, but Senate President Pete P. Reyes promised Mr. Connaughton that he'd get him a sandwich if he'd stay longer.
It is now 12:35.
No sandwich yet.
It is now 12:52.
It is now 1:27.
Taya sandwich. I'm starving.
1:45 PM. Still no sandwich. I feel for those federal guys.
I just got comments from Mike Tripp and Jane Mack asking for more details. Yes, we had a room full of orange. Yes, John Gourley was there. Yes, John Joyner was there...and got scolded like a school child by one of the federal representatives for not informing them of a schedule change.
The comments from the Legislature were all over the map. They still do not understand that we are talking about the waters, not the islands. Connaughton said at least 15 times that navigation would not be restricted, but the issue of the islands kept coming up time and time again.
Joe Guerrero expressed his dislike for the Antiquities Act. Ray Tebuteb had concerns with the timeline. David Apatang accused every single person supporting the monument of being bought off and Joe Camacho called Pew Environment Group an oil company disguised as a conservation group. Justo Quitugua thinks that the signers of the petition were nine year olds and Pete P Reyes thinks that the people who signed the petition have no long term interest in the Commonwealth.
So the Mayor of Saipan has no interest in the long term interest of the Commonwealth?