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Governor receives final draft of PA

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by Sabrina Salas Matanane

Guam - Governor Eddie Calvo's Chief Policy Advisor Arthur Clark along with State Historic Preservation Officer Lynda Aguon are now reviewing the final draft version of the Programmatic Agreement they received today from the Navy.  

Governor Calvo earlier this month in a speech before the Chamber of Commerce said he would pursue negotiations with the Defense Department to place the military's four pillars on the buildup in writing. These include:

  1. Shrinking of the federal footprint by the end of the buildup
  2. Leaving Pagat village and caves untouched
  3. Using a "One Guam" approach in improving infrastructure
  4. Employing a "Green Guam" approach to bolster island sustainability and protect natural resources

According to a media release the following language was added to the final draft of the Programmatic Agreement:

"If DoD selects an alternative for the range complex in the Route 15 area as noted in the FEIS, DOD commits to providing 24 hour a day/seven day a week unimpeded access to the Pagat Village and Pagat Cave historical sites, as part of the measures to avoid, minimize and mitigate impacts on historic properties. DoD will adjust proposed plans outlined in the FEIS to continue unfettered access to these important historical and cultural locations. Pagat cave and Pagat village would not be included in the footprint of the complex and full ownership of these properties would remain with the Government of Guam."

The new draft also includes a commitment to seek Congressional approval to transfer DoD funds to fully fund a cultural repository facility. Previously, DoD only offered partial funding.

While a complete review is underway Governor Calvo says his administration is moving forward on other fronts as well "We're working with the military now on parallel agreements to take care of the other promises," Governor Calvo said. "But, there's more we will be negotiating. We'll be addressing several issues with the federal government when we go to Washington, D.C. next week. This is the time to put all our cards on the table on some long-standing issues."  

These issues include war reparations, compact impact funding, capturing taxes from off-island companies, infrastructure funding, visa waiver programs, funding to deal with the impacts of the population influx, etc.  "We want to get what is best for the people of Guam and the country," Governor Calvo said. "We're very pleased with the way things are going."

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