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The Senate hosted the 2nd Youth Mock Congress on March 11, 2014, where 2 participants from each of the high schools in the Republic of Palau attended.

The participants were Mr. Austein Ngiraked and Mr. Judah Sibetang of Emmaus High School; Ms. Thalia Tmarsel and Ms. Jaycee Nolan of Palau Mission Academy; Mr. Joseph Patris and Ms. Jennifer Nakamura of Mindszenty High School; Mr. Wade Kitalong and Ms. Turang Rengiil of Palau High School; Ms. Lucy Aguon and Ms. Jael Alexander of Bethania High School; and Ms. Api-Sai E. Wasisang and Mr. Ives O. Rdialul of Belau Modekngei School.

The Mock Congress session began with the Installation Session where the Honorable Honora E. R. Rudimch, Senior Judge of the Court of Common Pleas spoke to the Mock Congress Senators regarding the significance of the Oath that public officials swear to before assuming their posts. Thereafter, Senior Judge Rudimch administered the oath to each Senator including the Mock Congress President Jaycee Nolan, Vice President Turang Rengiil, and Floor Leader Ives O. Rdialul.

After the participants were sworn in they assumed their posts as Senators of the Mock Congress and began their session to introduce their bills on first reading. On first reading the Mock Congress passed the following bills:

1. Mock Congress Bill No. 2-1: This bill was introduced by Senator Judah Sibetang which seeks to increase parental responsibility and liability for the conduct of their delinquent children, and for other related purposes.

2. Mock Congress Bill No. 2-2: This bill was introduced by Senate President Jaycee Nolan with the intent to ban the sale, and consumption of alcohol after midnight at licensed businesses such as bars and cabarets.

3. Mock Congress Bill No. 2-3: This bill was introduced by Senator Joseph Patris to provide for the punishment of hate crimes.

4. Mock Congress Bill No. 2-4: This bill was introduced by Senator Wade Kitalong which intends to ban the sale of tobacco and alcohol within 500 feet from any school and to increase the taxes on alcohol.

5. Mock Congress Bill No. 2-5: This bill was introduced by Senators Lucy Aguon and Jael Alexander. The bill seeks to ban the import of all tobacco products into the Republic.

The sixth bill which is Mock Congress Bill No. 2-6 which seeks to prohibit the sale of energy drinks to individuals under 18 years of age was DEFEATED on first reading.

The second half of the session was to entertain those bills that passed first reading on the third and final reading. At this stage each Senator was availed a chance to amend each bill through floor amendments. Therefore, on third reading the Mock Congress acted on the following bills as follows:

1. Mock Congress Bill No. 2-1, which seeks to increase parental responsibility and liability for the conduct of their delinquent child passed with an amendment to include the delinquent child in some of the penalties which includes the holding of signs about good parenting in public places and attending community and church activities.

2. Mock Congress Bill No. 2-2, which seeks to ban the sale, and consumption of alcohol after midnight at licensed businesses such as bars and cabarets, passed with an amendment to allow for such businesses to open until 2 a.m. on non-payday week and to close at 12 a.m. on payday week.

3. Mock Congress Bill No. 2-3, which provides for the punishment of hate crimes passed third reading.

4. Mock Congress Bill No. 2-4, which intends to ban the sale of tobacco and alcohol within 500 feet from any school and to increase the taxes on alcohol was defeated on third reading. The deciding factor in the debate was the economic impact and that the distance prohibition is not enough to deter underage purchase of such products and that better enforcement of current laws is needed.

5. Mock Congress Bill No. 2-5 which seeks to ban the import of all tobacco products into the Republic passed third reading. The deciding factor in the debate was the health impact of tobacco outweighs its economic benefits to the Republic.

The Second Mock Congress adjourned sine die and the Third Mock Congress will be scheduled for next year.

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