11 days and counting for the primary election - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

11 days and counting for the primary election

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by Ken Quintanilla

Guam - Last Friday the Guam Election Commission officially published the ballot title for Proposal A - the for-profit bingo initiative. "And what it says is that the initiative will be on the General Election and we are inviting arguments for and against it," said Maria Pangelinan, executive director of the Guam Election Commission.

She says that no one has yet to submit any arguments for or against the initiative, but either way the GEC's legal counsel is still prepared to put together an objective analysis of the initiative. From there the top arguments will be put into a pamphlet and mailed out to voters. Those arguments meanwhile are still being accepted 45 days until the General Election on September 22.

Pangelinan adds that during Monday night's GEC meeting, it was that very initiative's budget that was discussed among commissioners in which Pangelinan discussed her $55,000 funding request. "I'm putting together a budget that was approved by the Commission last night," she detailed. "I'm putting together a personnel category as well as a contractual and supplies, and I'm putting it together and submitting it to the Legislature with a courtesy copy to BBMR." She adds it will cost about $18,000 postage along and $32,000 for printing the pamphlets to mail out to voters.

And speaking of finances, the Palau Election Commission is on island meeting with the GEC, exploring opportunities with the GEC to save money on its shipping costs. "As Guam and Palau deal with the same election vendors and that would be Elections Systems & Software, so we are exploring the possibilities of consolidating our ballots stock order," said Pangelinan.

In the meantime, former governor Carl Gutierrez paid the GEC a visit last night in pursuit of his write-in campaign for public auditor. The GEC board accepted his six name variations along with approving a new sticker for Gutierrez to use in the Primary Election. The sticker not only has his name, but includes an oval that is already shaded-in. The GEC is allowing the use of a sticker because the ballots for the OPA race are going to be hand-counted.

Meanwhile, the GEC also discussed another write-in candidate, Democrat congressional hopeful Patrick Iriarte, who after submitting name variations last week such as 'Nostradamus of the Marianas' and 'Man with the Golden Mic' last week. The GEC instead decided not to accept those suggestions because they were not close enough to his name and are asking Iriarte to submit clarification of the names. The GEC next meets on Monday.

Additionally, tomorrow is the deadline to register to vote in the Primary along with the deadline to transfer districts.

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