Amendment pushed to help prevent commodity price increases on Guam

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The bill seeks to amend statutes that established the weight and load standards of container transport vehicles traveling on Guam’s roads. (file photo)

Bill 83-36 received positive testimony from a major wholesaler during its public hearing Tuesday morning.

The bill seeks to amend statutes that established the weight and load standards of container transport vehicles traveling on Guam’s roads.

Hermie Queja, the general manager of Micronesian Brokers Incorporated, said his company supports the bill, which also designates “haul” roads on Guam for the transport of products from the Port of Guam to warehouses in Harmon and other areas.

According to Quenga, the current weight and load standards increase the cost of basic commodities being imported and distributed on island.

If the current weight load standards are not amended, Queja said wholesalers would have to reduce the amount of cargo by as much as 15 percent, and reducing the load capacity in a container would raise prices on consumer goods.

“The freight cost is now absorbed by fewer products in the container. Thus, in increasing the landed costs for each item, the increased costs for goods will be passed on to retailers and foodservice operators, and ultimately, you and I, the end consumer will bear the burden of paying more at the cash registers,” Queja said.

With regard to the designation of “haul” roads, Queja said this is already a long-standing practice in the US mainland where overweight containers are prohibited from traveling on state highways.

Queja said overweight containers are only permitted to travel on designated “haul” roads, which are designated roads located in what is called overweight corridors or sometimes referred to as “green zones.”

“So the benefits of utilizing the overweight corridor, cannot be stated. Simply put, this keeps the cost of goods down,” Queja stressed.

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