The Guam Daily Post

12 23Wed12022015


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Back Local News Pangelinan urges governor to exercise prudence on bond

Pangelinan urges governor to exercise prudence on bond

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WITH the passage of Substituted Bill 414, the Legislature has given Gov. Eddie Baza Calvo the authority to borrow $100 million, but the governor still has the responsibility to act carefully and prudently in obligating the government on the additional borrowing, said Sen. Ben Pangelinan yesterday.

“I want to impress upon the governor that while the legislature has moved forward on giving him the authority, he still has the responsibility to act carefully and prudently in obligating us on this additional borrowing,” the Barrigada senator said.

Pangelinan said the governor should seek the advice of his deficit commission, whose members have only met once.

“The governor has the responsibility, based on the authorization to borrow with his deficit commission, to look at these things and have the deficit commission make a recommendation to him on whether he should proceed with the additional borrowing,” Pangelinan said.

Calvo must also demonstrate to the public that “we are indeed going to be okay if we borrow this money,” the senator added.

Pangelinan said the governor should put his deficit commission to work and have them take a look at borrowing the additional money.

“Examine the revenue numbers and the cost cutting measures he has promised he’s going to implement. How real are they and where are we at? So that as we begin having to pay the full amount of this debt service in 2014, no tax increase or severe layoffs in the government of Guam will be required,” Pangelinan said.

“While the Legislature has given the authority, the responsibility is still on him,” the senator added.

Doesn’t have to

Pangelinan said Calvo doesn’t have to issue this bond if he empanels the deficit commission and “they tell him it’s too risky or you’re going to look at a tax increase or massive layoffs if you do this and then make the final decision on authorizing the issuance.”

The deficit commission is tasked to provide five-year projections on expenses and revenues of the government. “And none of this has been done,” the lawmaker said.

Pangelinan said he hopes that the politics between the administration and the Legislature has not clouded Calvo’s promise of moving in a new direction.

“We’re hoping that the governor, who says we’re moving in a new direction, will indeed move us in a new direction and not let the politics that’s occurred here, influence his actions. We’re hoping that he is serious and committed to cost-cutting and revenue enhancements,” Pangelinan said.

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