Lawyer: Cyfred never obligated for sewer line - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Lawyer: Cyfred never obligated for sewer line

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by Nick Delgado

Guam - While the Guam Environmental Protection Agency has not yet determined if it will issue any notices of violation to the landowners at the Gill-Breeze Subdivision, Attorney Curtis Van De Veld, who represents subdivider Cyfred, contends that there was never an obligation for his client to install any wastewater infrastructure on the site. Additionally, he contends that information and impressions given to KUAM News in previous interviews by government officials about the subdivision were incorrect.

It was late last week Guam Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Lorilee Crisostomo had a team from her agency inspect the Yigo subdivision after receiving complaints about the lack of water and wastewater infrastructure.

"I have to say," Van De Veld noted, "what kind of moron is Lorilee Crisostomo?"

The attorney vents on the fact that the Gill-Breeze Subdivision is an agricultural half-acre subdivision that does not require the construction of a public sewer line. He also contends that it's the individual lot owners that may construct a septic tank and leaching field on their property and that it's the sole responsibility of the landowners who bought the property to comply with the law.  "They are responsible to comply with the requirements of putting a septic tank and leaching field, which is one of three ways in which you can have sewer under the laws of Guam," he explained.

Despite the complaint to the Guam EPA, Van De Veld further contends that no facts have been uncovered to suggest or even establish any impropriety by Francis Gill or Cyfred in the construction of infrastructure facilities in and to the subdivision, as well as any existence of impropriety by Gill, Cyfred, or former Guam Waterworks Authority general manager Bert Johnston, who on behalf of the agency entered into and implemented an memorandum of understanding for the joint installation of a waterline in and to the subdivision.

Van De Veld says Cyfred fully complied with all infrastructure requirements required when the subdivision was constructed and established, saying, "They therefore are not required under the subdivision law to have any form of sewer infrastructure...Mr. Gill has not preformed any impropriety, neither has Cyfred; that subdivision has been in existence longer than the Gill-Baza Subdivision."

He adds a fully constructed waterline exists within the subdivision, which was previously turned on after a settlement agreement negotiated by then-senator Carmen Fernandez, Cyfred and GWA. But he says shortly after Fernandez left office, then-GWA general manager David Craddick unilaterally turned the line off and it has remained off since that time. Van De Veld says that GWA has kept a portion of the waterline outside the subdivision live, allowing other individuals to tap into it.

In effect, he says the only people who have been denied use are the Gill-Breeze residents even though it was constructed with materials and equipment he says Cyfred provided.  Van De Veld says the waterline can be turned on at any time, if GWA so chooses.

While Crisostomo says she is working out legal issues on the matter with the Attorney General's Office, Van De Veld questions why the Guam EPA is not looking into the Chamorro Land Trust Commission's lands that are either less or more than 20,000 square feet that require water and sewer infrastructure, as he says there is already a government report showing those properties do not meet legal requirements.

"Why isn't EPA concerned about those people?  I guess it's just kick a man when you feel you can, defame him and it doesn't matter. That's irresponsible government.  And Ms. Crisostomo should be fired from her position," said Van De Veld.

Van De Veld also notes that the Gill-Breeze Subdivision was only done by Cyfred, and that Francis Gill is merely just one of the officers and shareholders.

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