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Clark working on Layon appeal

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 by Sabrina Salas Matanane

Guam - During his State of the Island Address Governor Eddie Calvo announced that he plans to resubmit a bill to the Guam Legislature to take the feds to court over the Ordot Dump and hold them accountable for the mess they started. He talked about how the people of Guam should be able to come together as equals to discuss issues that impact the lives of the people we are all supposed to be serving.

Specifically he talked about the Ordot Dump case and how GovGuam was denied having the most basic right of legal representation. It's an issue that's been appealed and finally will be heard this week.

Calvo left for the nation's capitol Wednesday and although his chief policy advisor Arthur Clark will be meeting him there, Clark says he will first make a stop in Hawaii, to sit on oral arguments for the government's appeal to the 9th Circuit Court concerning the Layon case.

"What's on appeal was, you recall, during the hearings, it was revealed to us by then Attorney General's Office, not the current one but the predecessor that they had stop representing the Government of Guam and decided that two and a half years earlier, they were now representing the receiver of course we took exception to that we tried to substitute counsel and we were denied representation during these proceedings so we appeal the fact that the court denied us a meaningful representation, any kind of legal representation, in that regards, especially in light to the fact that the counsel that was supposed to be our counsel, was saying no, we don't speak for you, we don't represent you, as a matter they even asserted attorney-client privilege against us when we tried to get copies of their communications with the receiver they refused to turn it over to us, purportedly their clients, and saying no we don't represent you anymore, we represent the receiver," he said.

According to Clark, eventually the government was allowed representation from the Cabot Mantanona lawfirm. But prior to that he says the Calvo Administration did not have a voice in the proceedings. It was a period of time he says that tens of millions of dollars in contracts were signed for the closure of the Ordot Dump and the government is left footing the bill.

"Our goal is basically to have that denial of counsel overturned and hopefully have an order from the Ninth Circuit directing the District Court to address the issues that arose from the lack of representation during that period of time," he said.
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