Tussle over transparency - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Tussle over transparency

Posted: Updated:

by Sabrina Salas Matanane

Guam - The Democrat majority in the Guam Legislature once again going after the Calvo Tenorio Administration. This time, over transparency.

"The governor can say he's being transparent all he want," said Rory Respicio, the legislature's acting speaker. During the Legislature's Weekly Address Respicio says the Calvo Tenorio Administration's "tales of transparency are really nothing more than political rhetoric and that in reality our government is shrouded in dark secrecy like no other time before in the history of our island."  

"Not only is there a dark secrecy there's also a climate of fear there's also whistleblowers are really retaliated against," he said.  

In response governors' chief of communications Troy Torres says Respicio's comments are baseless and without merit adding that if there's any secrets it's at the legislature. "I believe what the acting speaker might be referring to is the number of bills that are either heard or on the session floor without ever having a public hearing or the number of amendments that senators make to bills that are substantial that actually change the forms of bills that never had a public hearing," he said.

Respicio said, "By statute the speaker's authorize to waive a public hearing requirement on a matter that's already been publicly heard."

Aside from the lack of transparency, during his address Respicio said that truthfulness in accurate reporting is nearly non existent from some agencies especially when it comes to public finances.   He cited multiple examples of how the administration failed to provide information to senators citing the hesitation in providing a breakdown of the hay pay plan and most recently when senators requested information about the tax credits in lieu of cash payments program.

"I think transparency is releasing everything when you're being asked not just releasing what you want to release and then pat yourself on the back and saying I am being transparent," he said.

Torres defends the administration is being transparent citing companies like Standard and Poors, the Government Finance Officers Association and Bloomberg that recognized the administration for their financial transparency. "And it is what has lead to the improvement in the fiscal structure of the Government or Guam and the ability for these creditors and for these people who watch out for transparency and fiscal responsibility in government's throughout the nation when they're saying these improvements are having in the Government of Guam it means a lot," he said.

Senator Respico has introduced a resolution creating the Guam  Legislative Freedom of Information Advisory Council. The group will consist of 12 members including the attorney general, representatives from the media, the Legislative, Executive and Judicial Branches of government as well as members of the general public. 

  • NEWS HEADLINESMore>>

  • Outback Steakhouse staffers feed homeless in Dededo

    Outback Steakhouse staffers feed homeless in Dededo

    On Monday our friends over at Outback Steakhouse volunteered their time and food to feed the homeless at the Dededo Mayor's Office. They grilled on site and fed over 70 individuals who came out to enjoy some good old fashioned barbecue, Outback style! Outback Steakhouse is closed temporarily for a major remodel and renovations. It is expected to re-open in early December. The renovation is part of their 20th Anniversary activities and while renovations are under way, the team have b...More >>
    On Monday our friends over at Outback Steakhouse volunteered their time and food to feed the homeless at the Dededo Mayor's Office. They grilled on site and fed over 70 individuals who came out to enjoy some good old fashioned barbecue, Outback style! Outback Steakhouse is closed temporarily for a major remodel and renovations. It is expected to re-open in early December. The renovation is part of their 20th Anniversary activities and while renovations are under way, the team have b...More >>
  • Mark Charfauros informed of slight delay in his trial

    Mark Charfauros informed of slight delay in his trial

    Will he make his comeback to the Guam Police Department? He'll need to have his case settled in the courts before the Civil Service Commission will entertain his termination appeal. Former police colonel Mark Charfauros appeared in court on Tuesday. There he was advised there would be a slight delay to his February trial. When asked if parties would reach a resolution instead of going to trial, defense attorney Randy Cunliffe stated "I doubt it." Trial is now scheduled ...More >>
    Will he make his comeback to the Guam Police Department? He'll need to have his case settled in the courts before the Civil Service Commission will entertain his termination appeal. Former police colonel Mark Charfauros appeared in court on Tuesday. There he was advised there would be a slight delay to his February trial. When asked if parties would reach a resolution instead of going to trial, defense attorney Randy Cunliffe stated "I doubt it." Trial is now scheduled ...More >>
  • Chief judge dismisses case against GEB members

    Chief judge dismisses case against GEB members

    It's official. In an order issued this week, Chief Judge Frances Tydingco-Gatewood dismissed with prejudice the case against two Guam Education Board members in their individual capacities. They are Rosie Tainatongo and Jose Cruz, both of whom resolved their issues with Department of Education Superintendent Jon Fernandez. If you recall, Fernandez filed a $7 million lawsuit in the federal court after the board terminated his contract. No action was taken for the remaining GEB membe...More >>
    It's official. In an order issued this week, Chief Judge Frances Tydingco-Gatewood dismissed with prejudice the case against two Guam Education Board members in their individual capacities. They are Rosie Tainatongo and Jose Cruz, both of whom resolved their issues with Department of Education Superintendent Jon Fernandez. If you recall, Fernandez filed a $7 million lawsuit in the federal court after the board terminated his contract. No action was taken for the remaining GEB membe...More >>
Powered by Frankly