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CNMI federal court's funding dries up during shutdown, school funding also in jeopardy

 The U.S. District Court building, CNMI

Saipan, CNMI — The impact of the US government shutdown has reached the Northern Marianas with the US District Court for the commonwealth saying it only has funding until Friday.

District Court Chief Judge Ramona Mangloña said the US Judiciary has managed to cobble together sufficient funds to keep the District Court operating but only until this Friday.

She said after that day the court would be getting guidance from their administrative office.

However, even with the shutdown, Ms Mangloña said the federal court would not be closed because of people's constitutional rights .

The current federal government partial shutdown is the longest in US history.

It was reported last Monday that about 800,000 federal government workers missed paychecks last week.


Officials have warned that public schools in the Northern Marianas could be affected by the US government shutdown if it extends to March.

Tim Thornburg from the Public School System said that for now the PSS was financially capable of weathering the shutdown as federal education grants were forward-funded.

Mr Thornburg said that student loans and other payments were used to forward-fund state education agencies after US Congress appropriated them.

He also said the US Department of Education was one of only two departments in the federal government that made money.

However he said if the shutdown persisted through March, the local system would take a blow.

About half of Public School System budget for fiscal year 2018 consists of federal grants and money.

PSS was appropriated $US41.8 million for fiscal year 2019.

It had pitched an expenditure report of $55 million for their operations.