VIDEO: Budget Chair Pangelinan Questions Governor’s Assessment of GovGuam Finances

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Guam – Budget Committee Chair Senator Ben Pangelinan is questioning the Calvo Administration’s assessment of GovGuam’s financial situation. The new administration claims they’re facing a $116 million dollar budget shortfall this fiscal year, but Panglinan says, looked at another way,  its a more modest $2-million dollar shortfall in the 1st Quarter. And the financial picture, he says, is not as bleak as the new administration is painting it.

“We don’t see those numbers the way that they’re projecting,” said Pangelinan.

Pangelinan is not disputing the Administration’s assessment of a $116 million dollar cash shortfall over the entire fiscal year. But he points out that not all of that money is due and payable today. In terms of paying the day to day operating expenses of GovGuam, the Senator says the situation is more manageable than the $116 million dollar figure might suggest.

“We’re probably looking at maybe a million to a million eight short in this first quarter of the fiscal year.”

Senator Ben Pangelinan has legislative oversight of the budget and oversees the Office of Finance and Budget which is the legislative counterpart of the Governor’s Bureau of  Budget Management and Research.

“Maybe they were looking at retiring the entire GovGuam deficit in one fiscal year if they try to do that we will be short because there is just no way.”

According to a release from the Calvo Administrations Tuesday DOA Director Gener Deliquina says “We can’t afford it. If these were mandated to be paid today, we wouldn’t have the cash for it.”

Senator Pangelinan emphasizes that those liabilities don’t have to be paid today.

“Take a look at the budget read the budget read the restrictions on the budget read how we’re going to apply the expenditure controls on this budget and if you follow it I think we’re gonna do ok.”