NMASA LOOKS FORWARD
- Published on Wednesday, August 06, 2014 00:00
- By Laila Younis-Boyer - firstname.lastname@example.org
- Marianas Variety
“This has been a big year for sports in the CNMI. Last year, NMASA took over management of the Susupe Sports Complex. The complex is a showpiece of sport facilities in the Commonwealth and we are doing and will do everything we can to keep it so. Earlier this year, the Legislature enacted and the government signed a new public law assuring NMASA in independence from the government and giving us the tools we need to do our job,” said White.
While the vision to offer first rate training facilities as a local and international sport destination is “on our radar,” he says, NMASA is currently focusing on building from the ground up, including developing the staffing and resources it would need to get there.
“It is hard to ask for public funding to send our athletes to off-island competitions when our people can’t pay their utility bills, when we don’t always have access to the medical care we need and when our schools have to go begging for funds to improve our educational system,” he said.
“We can’t keep asking our athletes, coaches and officials to dig so deeply into their pockets while they are struggling to put food on their tables. NMASA now has the ability to start shouldering some of the burden by raising funds on its own,” he added.
White pointed out that businesses that make contributions to NMASA are entitled to a tax credit, just the same as contributions made to schools, NMI Humanities Council and the American Red Cross. NMASA is aware that it needs to be aggressive in applying its new tax credit ability to raise funds and meet NMASA’s sport objectives.
NMASA recently sent athletes to the 2014 Micronesian Games in Pohnpei who brought home medals in Basketball, Baseball, Athletics, Swimming, Canoe and Weightlifting and is planning to send a team of 100 to 150 athletes in a dozen or more sports for the South Pacific Games in Port Moresby next year.
“But the big news, as most of you know, is that the CNMI was recently awarded the 2021 Pacific Mini Games which will feature athletes, coaches and officials from 24 countries across the Pacific. At the Mini Games, we will offer 12 sports, including Athletics, Badminton, Golf, Tennis, Va’a, Volleyball, Baseball, Sailing, Swimming, Triathlon, Weightlifting and Wrestling,” said White.
“The vast majority of our facilities are already built and ready to use. The only major capital improvement that we need to make is the construction of bathroom and shower facilities and we expect to get federal funds for that,” he said.
“The Mini Games offers a great economic and social opportunity and NMASA wants to know what we can do for you to maximize that opportunity,” he told the membership.
For more information or to help NMASA, call 234-6457, email White at email@example.com or visit the NMASA Facebook page.