CLTC meets briefly with A.G. about U.S. D.O.J. lawsuit

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Guam – The Chamorro Land Trust Commission met briefly during a special meeting held to discuss the lawsuit the U.S. Department of Justice filed against the CLTC alleging a violation of the fair housing act.

The U.S. DOJ is claiming that by leasing lands to Chamorros the CLTC is practicing racial discrimination and is violating the Fair Housing Act. Today the Chamorro Land Trust Commission held a brief special meeting to discuss the lawsuit the DOJ filed against GovGuam and the CLTC.

Attorney General Elizabeth Barret Andersen will be representing the CLTC in the lawsuit. “The board has been sued in its official capacity no members of the board have been sued in their personal capacity. The Attorney General’s office will represent the commission and the government of Guam in their response which is due shortly,” said the A.G.

The answer to the complaint is due on October 19th. The Attorney General told the CLTC that she will discuss the lawsuit with them in more detail but it would have to be in an executive session which requires public notice and a court reporter among other things.

In the meantime, CLTC Administrator Mike Borja says they will continue to conduct their business as usual. “The Chamorro Land Trust is still, we have a number of applicants that we are still gonna be working with. You can still submit your applications as well. We have a number of lessees who will continue to work with on a regular basis and deal with them and compliance and enforcement side of the house as far as getting utilities so we’re gonna still do the day to day work on those kinds of things,” said Borja.

CLTC Chairwoman Pika Fejeran says this suit is something they’ve been preparing for. “Yeah, you know Clynt, I’d say I’ve been bracing myself for this. I’ve been waiting for this to come out since we got the first letter. I want to say back in March. And I mean it’s here all we can do is move forward. I have full faith in our A.G. and the team she has and we’re gonna work right alongside them,” said Fejeran.

There is no word yet on when exactly an executive session will be called to discuss the matter further with the A.G. but the A.G. did say it must be done soon.