Democrat Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero signed, on May 22, Bills 75-37 and 83-37 now known as Public Laws 37-15 and 37-16, meaning Guam businesses and island residents can expect assistance. Both bills passed on May 10.
Public Law 37-15, introduced by Democrat Sen. Joe San Agustin, provides economic recovery assistance for private businesses, that were impacted as a result of the global COVID-19 pandemic, through a program, known as the Local Employers Assistance Program or LEAP, by the Guam Economic Development Authority.
Public Law 37-16 was introduced by Democrat Speaker Therese Terlaje. It is a legislative act that appropriates excess revenues from Fiscal Years 2022 and 2023 to the Guam Power Authority for a five-month extension to the Prugraman Ayuda Para I Taotao-ta Energy Credit Program with another $500 credit toward its accounts.
While she agrees with the intentions of providing additional relief to offset inflation and the rising cost of services, Leon Guerrero is concerned that the recent spending threatens to drag the island’s government back into a deficit.
“The Legislature simply must refrain from further appropriating revenues collected in excess of adopted levels,” said Leon Guerrero in a press release. “My administration has worked diligently to restore our government’s fiscal health so that we can focus on matters that move Guam forward. I encourage the Legislature to do its part, and exercise the restraint necessary to ensure we do not fall back into a cycle of deficit spending.”