Getting tough on family violence
Guam - It was earlier this week the Predator Prevention Act made it ways to the Third Reading File and if Senator Frank Aguon, Jr.'s get his way he's hoping Bill 41 will follow suit.
The 32nd Guam Legislature debates another bill to get tough on crime. Earlier this week it was strengthening laws against sexual predators, today getting tough on perpetrators of family violence. Aguon, "Some of the provisions it would be increased for example if a family members commits a first offense automatic minimum 48 hours imprisonment the proposal."
According to Bill 41, for the second offense the court shall impose a sentence of no less than thirty days, the third offense: on top of being classified as a third degree felony the sentence would be no less than one year. "This all adds up madam speaker in terms of ensuring that the victims and their families hopefully are given that additional time for protection in terms of being able to deal with these circumstances," he said.
But Bill 41 evidently wasn't tough enough for Senator Michael San Nicolas. "I just want to make it a little bit more harsh. Actually, a lot more harsh" he said.
San Nicolas introduced a flurry of amendments, such as changing a conviction of family violence immediately from a misdemeanor to a third degree felony and lengthening sentencing times. "It may cost our people more money it may be inundate our prison system even more. And that's just something that I'm willing to accept and if we need to raise a tax or raise a fee or raise something to pay to lock these people up longer, I'm more than willing to have that discussion madam speaker because I feel our people are more than willing to have that discussion also" he said.
Due to concerns and discussions with the Attorney General's Office however, San Nicolas eventually moved to withdraw his amendments but indicated introducing legislation at a later time.
Also during today's session senators moved Bill 31 to the Third Reading File, the measure relates to the retention of procurement related email messages.
Bill 32 also moved to the Third Reading File. The legislation is relative to prohibiting GovGuam from excluding local businesses from the procurement process .
Bill 54 was also moved to the Third Reading File. Additionally Bill 29 was added to the agenda and moved to Third Reading File. The measures relates to the Competitive Equalization Act on the leasing of Guam property.