Koror, July 30, 2019 – Effects of climate change alarmed lawmakers leading to a bill being introduced proposing the relocation of Belau National Hospital as it is threatened by rising tides along with causeway road connecting to Meyuns.
Bill 10-161 was introduced by Senator Hokkons Baules, Kerai Mariur, Regis Akitaya, J.Uduch Sengebau-Senior, Rukebai K. Inabo, Phillip P. Reklai, Aric M. Nakamura, Mark U. Rudimch, Mason N. Whipps, Frank Kyota, Camsek E. Chin, Stevenson J Kuartei, John Skebong on July 9.
The bill seeks to relocate the national hospital to a more secure location due to the impact of climate change.
The senate proposed the relocation of the hospital to Asahi Baseball field and move the baseball field to the current location of the hospital.
The bill proposed to fund the project through the infrastructure funds provided by the United States to Palau through the amended Compact Review Agreement signed in 2018. It seeks to appropriate $2 million for acquisition of rights to any privately-held or state-owned land needed for the relocation.
The bill proposes amendment to Chapter 3 of Title 34 of the Palau National Code subchapter to include the Belau National Hospital Relocation Committee Act.
It also outlined that a committee for the hospital relocation must submit a comprehensive plan that include details about the design of the building and how hospital operations should remain uninterrupted at the Belau National Hospital during the relocation process. (Kerdeu Diamond Uong)