GEC unsure if it will handle Troy Torres' complaint - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

GEC unsure if it will handle Troy Torres' complaint

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The Guam Election Commission remains unsure if they will handle the complaint filed by Troy Torres last week. Commissioners discussed it during their meeting Wednesday night. 

GEC Executive Director Maria Pangelinan says the Commission is seeking legal guidance in the process to act on the complaint. She says the biggest issue is identifying if his complaint falls into GEC's purview. As reported, the complaint requests to conduct an investigation into board member Jadeen Tuncap, who is also the deputy chief of staff to Lieutenant Governor Ray Tenorio.

The former Rodriguez/Cruz campaign manager alleged that Tuncap personally visited the home of a well known supporter of Senator Dennis Rodriguez Jr. asking for the supporter to relay a message to tell the lawmaker to vote in favor of the governor's tax hike bill, or he would not sign his - now-running mate - Dave Cruz's personnel contract to teach ROTC students at JFK High School.  Thus, removing him as a classified employee, so that his candidacy would not violate the Mini-Hatch act.

Rodriguez has since responded to the extortion allegations stating, “The allegations made by Troy Torres are true. They sent a message at that time and my response was that it was a crazy message - and to relay back that I would be voting my conscience on the tax hikes - and that I would not succumb to blackmail and corruption.”

Rodriguez added the contract for Cruz essentially made him an unclassified employee - ensuring Cruz would not violate the Mini Hatch Act by campaigning as the Lieutenant Governor candidate.The administration then responded, “Senator Rodriguez reached out to the Governor for help with David Cruz’s contract, and the Governor agreed to this, only after it went through the  approval process of DOE and the Attorney Generals Office.” Adelup officials add the vote on the tax hike bill happened one week after the Governor signed Cruz’s contract.

Allegations of government corruption have poured out since Torres’ arrest and a raid on his Latte Heights last month. He along with others were taken into custody on drug charges before being released and given a notice to appear in court by 2021. The AG’s Office is also currently reviewing the claim Torres filed this week seeking $1 million, and a personal apology from top members of the administration including the Governor. He contends he was unlawfully detained.

Pangelinan hoping to hear from legal counsel by the end of next week. She adds any removal of a commissioner would require legislative approval. Meantime, the GEC also continues reviewing campaign finance reports after KUAM reported a slew of political candidates’ questionable donations and expenditures.

The apparent violations ranged from over the limit contributions to questionable spending of campaign funds.
 

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