Kwajalein’s development agency is focused on delivering action on four projects over the next few months, while it plans for bigger, more costly projects going forward.
“These are the low-hanging fruit we are going after immediately,” said Kwajalein Senator David Paul, who doubles as chairman of the board of the Kwajalein Atoll Development Authority (KADA). The three projects are:
• Renovating the basketball/tennis court complex on the south end of the island with plans to include a kids play area. Estimated cost: $100,000.
• Fix the boat ramp by the old Mobil tanks so that local boat owners can get their boats out of the water. “Ebeye people almost never take their boats out of the water,” Paul said. “It’s a big maintenance issue.”
• Purchase a boat for travel between Santo (Third Island) and Ebeye. Currently, Santo residents travel space available on Army flights between Kwajalein and Roi-Namur, then have to take a boat back to Ebeye or Santo. “This is the biggest community outside of Ebeye on Kwajalein Atoll,” said Paul, pointing out the community has expressed concern about the lack of transportation available get passengers and goods transported between Ebeye and Santo. “They can only take a backpack on the plane.”
• Improve management of the dump at the north end of Ebeye. The project, with approved US funding of $600,000 from the Compact, will build an equipment shed and support other waste management improvements. Representatives of KADA and Kwajalein Atoll Local Government Public Works, which currently manages the garbage collection system on Ebeye, are consulting with Majuro Atoll Waste Company to develop similar solid waste systems on Ebeye. “Let’s replicate a functioning system,” said Paul.
Read more about this in the April 22, 2016 edition of the Marshall Islands Journal.