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About Us

The Office of Planning and Development (OPD) is mandated to:

  • Improve planning in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) to increase the effectiveness of government and private actions as well as coordination among different agencies and levels of government to guide growth of the CNMI, working with the Planning and Development Advisory Council (PDAC) and other partners;
  • Establish a CNMI Comprehensive Sustainable Development Plan (CSDP) that shall serve as a guide for future long-range development using and improving on existing plans, maps, and other resources;
  • Serve as a clearinghouse for all information related to development, planning, and resource use in CNMI; to identify objectives, policies, and priorities for the CNMI;
  • Provide a basis for determining priorities and allocating resources; and
  • Establish a system for plan formulation and program coordination to provide for an integration of all major CNMI and individual island activities.
  • Click on the links to learn more about OPD’s Mission and Mandates as well as Functions and Duties, CSDP Contents, and Planning Milestones.

P.L. 20-20’s COMPREHENSIVE SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT PLANNING PROCESS

GATHER DATA

The Planning and Development Advisory Council (PDAC) and partners support data collection and review to create a “baseline assessment” of the existing state of the resources.

Taskforces and report sections focus on (i) natural resources, (ii) the built environment, and (iii) socio-economic and disaster risk reduction planning.

Gathering and centralizing data to support more efficient planning and project implementation is a mandate of P.L. 20-20 § 20174(g).

ASSESS

The PDAC and partners support review of data. Additional information is sought to identify data gaps and discuss observed trends. Categories assessed for plan include:

Land use, community design, transportation, public facilities, public lands, public buildings, housing, redevelopment, conservation, recreation, safety, tourism, development policy, capital improvements, labor work force, specific policies, and other elements which relate to the physical development of CNMI.

P.L. 20-20 § 20176 (a) – (r)

ENVISION

OPD leads “comprehensive sustainable” visioning and plan creation efforts to establish short and long-range guidance for economic, infrastructure, and physical development consistent with proper protection to enhance the quality of the environment and preserve the CNMI’s natural beauty and historical heritage.
P.L. 20-20 § 20173(a)

ACHIEVE

Emphasis will be placed on the continuing nature of the comprehensive plan program rather than a final completion of a single plan.

P.L. 20-20 § 20177

Plan Implementation and Financing. The Comprehensive Sustainable Development Plan shall contain a schedule of programs and projects to be implemented annually. Funding for such programs and projects shall be identified in the Plan by the project’s or program’s principal or administering government agency or instrumentalities.

P.L. 20-20 § 20182