THE U.S. House Education and Labor Committee on Friday completed its portion of the fiscal year 2022 reconciliation plan with an estimated $77 million allocated to CNMI schools that need repairs, U.S. Congressman Gregorio Kilili Camacho Sablan said.

Kilili said the House Democratic members "delivered on the Biden Administration’s Build Back Better Agenda by making major investments in education, job training, child care, and more."

He said students from the CNMI who are seeking a bachelor’s degree will be eligible for in-state tuition at U.S. public universities.

Board of Education Chairman Andrew L. Orsini said although it's too early to comment since the measure still needs to be approved by the full U.S. Congress before it goes to the president, "I see this as an added benefit for the entire Marianas and the Public School System as a whole."

"Besides the prior funding already received by the CNMI, this would also hopefully jump-start our local economy moving forward," Orsini added.

Kilili said child care will also be more affordable for families

"For the first time the Marianas will receive U.S. Department of Labor funding to establish one-stop job centers for those seeking employment and training opportunities. All Republicans voted against the legislation, which now goes to the Budget Committee for consideration," he said.

In related news, Kilili said students at Francisco M. Sablan Middle School and Tanapag Middle School have received 10 boxes of books for their libraries on Wednesday last week as part of his "Let’s Read!" initiative.

"Since 2009, we have distributed 57,642 books chosen by your congressional staff from the Library of Congress for distribution in the Marianas. Let’s Read! is more important than ever now to help schools across our islands rebuild libraries damaged or destroyed by Typhoon Yutu. Thanks to all the readers at FMS and Tanapag Middle School for hosting us," Kilili said.

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