Adelup has responded to the latest charge made by Congressman Michael San Nicolas that the administration has not been forthright about its use of American Rescue Plan funding.
In a statement, Krystal Paco-San Agustin, the governor’s communications director, characterized the congressman’s statements as “misinformation.”
“There has been a lot of misinformation circulating about how certain portions of the ARP funds can be used and who should be directly in control of how those funds are to be distributed. Unfortunately, that misinformation is originating from some elected officials who should know better,” she said.
According to Paco-San Agustin, the American Rescue Plan is a federal law that was drafted with the whole nation in mind and every state and territory is different.
“Guam, and some other places, do not have counties. Our villages are not the same as counties and to pretend otherwise is disingenuous. Our villages also do not meet the definition of Non-Entitlement Units. Trying to get them to fit that definition results in one thing and one thing only — less funding,” Paco-San Agustin said.
As recent as the administration’s last meetings with U.S. Treasury officials in October, Paco-San Agustin said they have reconfirmed this point and trying to force Guam’s villages to meet those definitions only to receive less funding is not an acceptable outcome.
“Over the course of the last several months, the Governor, Lt. Governor, and their fiscal team have met with the various mayors and the leadership of the MCOG to develop the plans on how to maximize these funds so that the greatest benefit can be felt at the village level. If we want the villages of Guam to be treated as counties in the various states and have the funding levels remain in our favor, the solution lies in only one place — the United States Congress,” Paco-San Agustin said.