Saipan, MP – Congressman Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan announced today that the Department of Homeland Security had set September 7 (EST) as the date for publication of regulations implementing the CNMI-Only transitional worker classification in the Federal Register. A public inspection version of the regulations will be available one day earlier, September 6 (EST), at http://www.federalregister.gov/learn/public-inspection-desk. Homeland Security notified Sablan earlier this week that Secretary Janet Napolitano had signed the final regulations and that they were being prepared for publication in the Register.
Publication of this Final Rule will end over two years of waiting and uncertainty for the Northern Marianas economy. An Interim Rule was issued October 2009, but was enjoined a month later by a federal court following a lawsuit brought on by the Commonwealth Government.
Ever since, the business community, U.S workers, and foreign workers have been left guessing about the rules for employment in the Northern Marianas after November 27, 2011.
Homeland Security officials are expected in the Northern Marianas later this month to hold briefing sessions and answer questions from the public about the regulations.
Officials have also assured Congressman Sablan that the Department is prepared to process the thousands of applications expected to be filed prior to the expiration of local umbrella permits at the end of November.