Calvo Administration Defends GMH Bailout Proposal

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Senior Advisor Troy Torres urges lawmakers to put party politics aside.

Guam – Governor’s Office Senior Advisor Troy Torres is defending the governor’s Guam Memorial Hospital proposal, pointing out that while it is an election year, lawmakers should put party politics aside.

 

Torres emphasizes that the bill is about a hospital that is in dire need of help. While some senators are scrutinizing the measure asking tough questions, Torres says these are the same questions that have been asked before.

In fact, he points out that the Hospital Management Advisory Team had just spent the last several months doing exactly that. Torres notes that senators should also spend some time reading the HMAT report before criticizing the governor’s proposal.

“This is a whole lot bigger than your typical proposal in the government that deals with a whole lot of politics. This is about people’s lives. This is the Guam Memorial Hospital and so we beg of these senators, this is not a democrat or republican thing. We’re not just asking, we’re begging these senators at least for this one, look at the plan and study it and consider everything that needs to be done,” pleads Torres.

 

 

 

 Below is a transcription of Governor Calvo’s weekly address in which he talks about his GMH proposal.

WE ARE GMH: We’ve been down this road before. We must help GMH now.

 

 

HAFA ADAI MY FRIENDS AND FAMILY

 

For years, we all knew that solid waste operations needed help. It wasn’t unusual to see plumes of black smoke billowing from the mountain of trash that filled what once was a valley. It also wasn’t unusual to hear people calling radio talk shows to complain about their trash being piled on the side of the road.

 

Trash pick up was free. Only commercial haulers paid any real money, regularly. The program had to be subsidized by taxpayers. People complained. Politicians did nothing. Ordot burned and the Feds took over.

 

GMHA needs our help. For years, there hasn’t been the political will to increase the fees. GMHA can’t pay its vendors, people complain that they have to go off island for procedures and ask why these services are not available here at home.

 

We’ve been down this road before.

 

This is a community issue and before GMHA burns, we must roll up our sleeves and get the work done.  There have been piecemeal improvements — but those don’t address GMHA’s needs or our community’s needs.

 

The Health and Insurance Industry Investment Act aims to do that and includes external funding that would not just help GMHA now, only for financial problems to resurface in a few years, but to create a Center of Excellence that provides services reflecting the needs of our people and allow GMHA to pay its vendors on time and, if we get this right, on its own.

 

Thank you! God bless Guam and God bless GMH!