GBB special report expresses concern over "lack of assistance" - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

GBB special report expresses concern over "lack of assistance"

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by Mindy Aguon

Guam - Federal receiver Gershman, Brickner & Bratton has filed a special report with the District Court expressing concern with what they claim is the lack of assistance from the Governor's Office and the government's lawyer.  But Adelup clearly has a much different take on the matter.

GBB contends there is a lack of assistance from the Governor's Office and the Attorney Rawlen Mantanona.  They claim it has placed the timely resolution of several important issues in jeopardy. The areas of concern include the acquisition of the land needed for the Ordot Dump closure, reviewing the request for proposal for obtaining legal counsel for the Guam Solid Waste Authority's board of directors, complying with the court's order for the parties to develop a plan for financing additional projects, and personnel issues relating to employees of the GSWA.

The court replaced the Attorney General's Office with Attorney Mantanona but the receiver asked that the AG's Office be allowed to continue to represent the GSWA in only three specific areas.  The governor's legal counsel did not agree and the receiver is now asking for guidance about how to proceed.

Governor's deputy press secretary Phill Leon Guerrero told KUAM News, "We find it really hard to believe that a multimillion dollar company like GBB would have to rely on a government paid attorney. In fact, several government-paid attorneys to do their work for them. For instance, having government-paid attorneys settle a private case between this multimillion dollar company and Lagu Sanitation or for a multimillion dollar company to rely on government attorneys to come up with its financial plan."

GBB has asked for clarification on whether Mantanona will be participating in meeting with Lagu to discuss a matter that is included in the consent decree, assisting the GSWA board obtain legal counsel and assisting GSWA in finalizing the land acquisition. The receiver has made it clear for months now that it is in control of the Guam Solid Waste Authority and remains in charge until they turn control back over to the Government of Guam. 

The GSWA board has expressed concerns with the inability to get information from the receiver, such as financial reports, and expedite efforts to obtain its own legal counsel. "This carpetbagging company really has been nickel-and-diming the people of Guam for a really long time," Leon Guerrero continued. "They charge us for phone calls into radio stations and the like and so this really is kind of par for the course for them. I think the most unfortunate thing is that they continue to do these actions and they continue to try to place these additional burdens on the people without regard to the really enormous tipping fees that are placed on the backs of our families."

Chief Judge Frances Tydingco Gatewood has ordered Attorney Mantanona to file a response to the report by February 7 and the court will hold a hearing on Thursday, February 27.  

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