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DPJ leaders dragging feet on

Date Posted: 2009-05-07

A bill funding the Okinawa Science Technical Graduate University now under construction near Onna Village is being discussed in the House of Representatives, but legislators are balking at setting time frames to launch the new school.
Okinawa Governor Hirokazu Nakaima has personally gone to Tokyo to appeal to cabinet and political leaders to push the university bills along, but thus far has been unsuccessful in lining up support. The House of Councilors has never cleared the bills, leaving funding in limbo. Members of the Democratic Party of Japan are opposed to the graduate university and have been blocking progress.
The concern, Okinawa officials say, is that if supplementary budget discussions are stalled, little time will remain for discussion of the school bill will be available in the House of Representatives before it goes out of session and dissolves. The central government has chosen to financially support the graduate university for ten years, but political blocs are opposed to having the new school established as a special school corporation instead of a public, government institution.
Local leaders are concerned about the amounts of subsidy moneys being provided to the new Okinawa school. They point out that only Okinawa gets 10 billion in subsidies, while similar graduate schools in other prefectures are receiving 5~6 billion.


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