Yup, you got that right! Former judge and former senator Robert Klitzkie just called Governor Calvo’s paid government-wide “Black Friday” holiday a “Red Friday.” During a public hearing on pending property tax legislation on Thursday afternoon, Klitzkie was driving home his point that GovGuam is still stuck in the bad habit of spending entirely too much money.
Guam – Bob Klitzkie is seeing red, looking back in despair at Black Friday.
“The flawed social policy embodied in the Black Friday Holiday — or maybe Red Friday is more appropriate in this case…pales in comparison to its fiscal profligacy.”
It’s a fancy way of saying Governor Eddie Calvo is a big spender when everyday folks are still scrambling for a pot to pee in.
“The obvious pandering to government employees was disrespectful to those stuck with the new taxes, i.e. those who work in our visitor industry, most of which is a 24/7 undertaking not affording many employees even Thanksgiving off, much less the day after,” he said.
The retired judge and lawmaker has been a proud thorn in the governor’s side and a pesky rock in the shoe of a senator or two, criticizing everything from sneaky midnight pay raises for the legislature and Adelup to what he deems excessive executive security detail for the governor, lieutenant governor, and their families.
So Klitzkie offers what he calls begrudging support of Bill 374-34 (COR), an act to clarify the language describing the application of a new property tax hike on each land plot—inclusive of buildings—with a combined value of a million dollars or more.
Right now the law is missing the words “or more” to specify that improved properties worth a million or more would be subject to the new tax of 7/18 percent. The hike could mean the difference of collecting $8 million dollars a year in revenue sorely needed to feed Guam’s billion-dollar annual budgets, and specifically to help support the Guam Education Facilities Fund.
Education—very arguably a cause pulling on the heart strings of former Senator Klitzkie, author of the Adequate Education Act.
The former lawmaker had wanted to tie his support for the qualified property tax amendment to the repeal of a subsection of Guam code authorizing the Governor to declare holidays like this year’s million-dollar taxpayer-funded Black Friday, but he thought better of holding his support hostage in the prevailing political climate.
“No governor should have the ability to stick us with a million-dollar bill for nothing, Klitzkie said. “As indicated supra, my unconditional support of this bill depends on the repeal. However, since the lieutenant governor/Won Pat Ten-Salary Smash and Grab of November 21, 2014, the kind of parliamentary acrobatics necessary to repeal the offending statute and protect us from the next danger point is no longer politically possible.”