Governor: time to move the military buildup forward - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Governor: time to move the military buildup forward

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by Ken Quintanilla

Guam - There's no shortage of discussion regarding the military buildup especially in light of the release of the Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement and the introduction of controversial HR-4402 in the past few weeks.   

And Governor Eddie Calvo says it's time to move the buildup forward.

The governor says this buildup process has gone on long enough. "I'll be sending word to Washington in the coming days that Guam's governor and congresswoman are in support of the military buildup because doing it properly will benefit both Guam and the United States," he said.

In his weekly address, Governor Calvo says not only is he generally in support of the plans proposed by the Navy but that he's willing to sit down with the feds to iron out any details and address any disagreement. "The time for political maneuvering and grandstanding is long gone. There's a plan in front of us to move the buildup forward. This plan takes into account almost every previous objection to the buildup, and provides even more options than the last Environmental Impact Statement," he said.

The comment period is currently open for the Draft SEIS. One of the differences is that Pagat will no longer be the preferred site of the live fire training range complex, with the governor saying, "I wish to acknowledge the effort by many who rallied to ensure that our historical and cultural interests were preserved. I am not talking just about people within the government, but primarily the grass roots groups, such as We Are Guahan who gave voice to our ancestors, who brought national, even international, attention to the need to preserve our historical resources, not just our economic ones."

We Are Guahan along with our islands are sacred and families in the Ritidian area continue to rally most recently during a roundtable at the Guam Legislature over concerns about the latest SEIS that moves the range from Pagat to Northwest Field.

In his address, Calvo says the Navy and JGPO have showed their willingness to change their plans - having moved the firing range preferred option three times already - each time in response to concerns from senators. Calvo says the delay is enough and its time to get the buildup started. "The Government of Guam can show unity in its support if senators do the right thing and pass a resolution indicating what Congresswoman Bordallo and I are telling Washington: we support the buildup," he said.

"I think he's forgotten there's been three resolutions that were passed by three different legislatures," said said Speaker Judi Won Pat, noting two of those resolutions were passed and voted upon by Governor Calvo and Lt. Governor Ray Tenorio when they were both senators in the Guam Legislature.

"So I don't understand the need for another resolution those resolutions stand until such time someone wants to pull it back," she said.

Won Pat says statements out of Adelup in the past few weeks have appeared to depict that senators do not support the buildup. Won Pat has expressed her disappointment with Calvo over his statements on the buildup adding its best to carefully read through plans before making "blanket statements" that may affect our community. "So absolutely it has to taken everyone here in our community because it is there lives as well that are going to be affected until such time that they're heard then I think the governor needs to listen to the people as well," she said.
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