Guam – Senator Judi Guthertz held a meeting with JGPO Executive Director David Bice urging him to find a way to avoid impacting the Pagat historic site by use for firing ranges.
According to a release, Senator Guthertz said the Pagat issue, along with the proposed construction of an aircraft carrier berth and ‘turning basin’ in Apra Harbor, requiring dredging of some 171 acres of coral, are the two major issues currently driving Guam opposition to the buildup.
Both projects are currently on hold, pending completion of a programmatic agreement under federal historic protection laws for the Pagat site and a lengthy and detailed study of the coral in Apra Harbor.
While she said she was optimistic about the buildup going forward following signing of the ROD, Senator Guthertz called for improvements in coordination between the military and civilian government to negotiate various concerns, and on a higher, policy‐level footing than the body spelled out in the ROD to handle the pacing and timing of the buildup.
Guthertz told General Bice she would once again be urging Governor Felix P. Camacho to empanel the Guam First Commission to address these chores, saying “it will provide the proper body for discussions and negotiations with the military in the implementation of the ROD.”
Governor Camacho originally vetoed Senator Rory J. Respicio’s bill establishing the Commission, but it became law about a year and a half after the veto was overridden. The governor however has refused to appoint Commission members since then.