by Mindy Aguon
Guam - Healthcare Committee chairman Senator Dennis Rodriguez, Jr. has expressed concerns about the legality of the Guam Memorial Hospital's board of trustees, which Governor Eddie Calvo empanelled last week. Rodriguez says with the island's chief executive invoking his Organic Act authority by removing the management and board at GMH last month, he questions why the governor empanelled a board last week since public law requires the board members to come from a trustee nominating council.
It's an issue the freshman policymaker is hoping the Attorney General's Office can clear up. he told KUAM News, "Without that guidance from the attorney general, or without a court telling us that that law is inorganic, that's the law of the land so that needs to be adhered to and so what we're saying is the governor could put individuals up there, but maybe as advisory, so we're asking him to clarify what their duties and roles will be."
Governor Calvo says he's aware of the request for a legal opinion, but stressed that in the meantime, the hospital needs a board in place, in light of concerns about patient care. "With that board action not a possibility because the board isn't impaneled, it lead me to making a decision that I believe was so important that I used my organic authority to empanel this board through that organic authority, which is very clear that I do have," he said.
The chief executive added he wants the board to move toward hiring a permanent administrator. Senator Rodriguez meanwhile is seeking a meeting with the attorney general and the governor and Legislature's legal counsels to resolve the concerns.