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GPD maps out expansion

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by Nick Delgado

Guam - The Guam Police Department is hoping for a major facelift as the island anticipates an increase in population from the relocation of Marines from Okinawa to Guam.  Its millions of dollars the agency plans to spend despite the challenges GPD faces such as its lack of personnel.

Chief of Police Paul Suba has put together the draft idea of what the department wants its new headquarters to look like.  "This will be an historic event and facility, one that I mentioned to you is a collaboration of different personnel within the department, the governor's office, the governor himself," he said.

Suba is hopeful this state-of-the-art facility includes a police museum, as well as a restaurant that can be subleased to feed employees and officers on their break and don't have time to leave for breakfast or lunch, or residents waiting for their record documents. DPW, GHURA, and GEDA continue their weekly meetings to produce information for chairman of the Committee on Law Enforcement, Senator Adolpho Palacios, to assist in financing these projects. Palacios however has already introduced legislation hoping to provide a joint facility with GPD and the Guam Fire Department.

Meanwhile, as other new GPD facilities have been constructed such as the Dededo Precinct, the Forensic Lab and now the Agat Precinct, which is underway, Suba says the department is working on obtaining new radio's, weapons, ten new motorcycles worth more than $200,000 together, and even thirty 2008 V8 Dodge Chargers, totaled at a whopping $1.3 million.

He said, "Equipped with the latest technology including in car cameras and computer systems. GPS to track the vehicles so that we can be more efficient in monitoring fuel consumption."

As for the department's ongoing struggle to increase its manpower to assist with the rise in population from the military buildup, Suba is hoping that GPD will not run into the same snag when the department received federal money for new hires.  "The down side is that we weren't able to see the numbers that we had asked for. We had requested two hundred officers be covered under that grant. The reality is that we only got fourteen that will be covered," he said.

Suba adds that they are working with GCC to help obtain personnel and train them through an apprenticeship program.  The agency is also planning a new Yigo Precinct to handle the greater population increase up north with the military buildup, and a Talofofo Precinct to deal with the east and south-east portion of the island.

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