By: L.N. Reklai
February 9, 2017 (Koror, Palau) President Remengesau Jr. submitted draft bill to both houses of congress to amend RPPL 9-49 and RPPL 9-62, to postpone the collection of the Environmental Impact Fee to no later than October 1, 2018.
The bill proposes to amend RPPL 9-49 to limit some of the exemptions, allocates $5.00 out of the $100 fee toward airport improvement and seeks to impose the collection of the fee into airline tickets.
President Remengesau’s transmittal letter cites that the current world economy and particularly its potential impact on Palau’s tourism may be further negated if Palau implements the Environmental Impact Fee.
Recommendations and concerns from various sectors to the President support delaying the implementation of the EIF collection.
The proposal maintains the collection of the $50 dollar fee (green fee and departure tax) that is currently being assessed of every traveler.
President Remengesau acknowledges that Pension Plan and State allocations will be affected if implementation of EIF is postponed and says he will work with OEK to identify funds to address these because these agencies, especially Pension Plan will be affected. [/restrict]