U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, a Republican representing Alaska, introduced a bill March 1 calling for an agreement between the United States and the Republic of Palau.

Palau, one of three Micronesian nations that have a special treaty with the U.S., had penned an agreement with the U.S. government in 2010.

But it has not been ratified by the Congress, in part because some in Congress say Palau has not abided by federal spending requirements.

Because of that, tens of millions of dollars of federal funding and grants for economic assistance for the tiny island nation have been held up.

The Rock Islands in Palau, Micronesia.
The Rock Islands in Palau, Micronesia. Courtesy of LuxTonnerre via Flickr

Murkowski’s bill, which is co-sponsored by Democrats Mazie Hirono of Hawaii and Maria Cantwell of Washington, appears intended to resume the funding until 2023.

That’s the same year that federal money is largely set to expire to the Federated States of Micronesia and the Republic of the Marshall Islands.

Read more about the Compact of Free Association in Civil Beat’s ‘A Journey That Has No Ending’.

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