Guam – After a scathing report by the Department of Correction’s Federal Monitor earlier this month, and a response by the U.S. Attorney’s Office Monday, Senator Brant Mccreadie is saying a new prison would solve most of DOC’s issues whileVice Speaker BJ Cruz says DOC management needs to come up with a medical and physiological treatment plan for the prison.
Cruz says he saw the latest report slamming the department of corrections for its failure to provide adequate medical and mental health care for inmates coming. Two weeks ago the Chairman for the Committee On General Government Operations wrote to DOC Director Jose San Agustin asking for the departments ideal budget in order to comply with core mandates, but the department responded saying the budget submitted by the governor for next fiscal year is sufficient.
Vice speaker Cruz is afraid that doc will go into federal receivership if it doesn’t come up with a plan and buget that provides adequate medical and physiological care for inmates.
In his report filed in District Court yesterday, Assistant U.S. Attorney Mikel Schwab asked that the court order DOC to produce a detailed plan for maintaining professional healthcare and security staffing levels within 90 days.
Thats exactly the type of plan Senator Cruz points out the department has been pushing off for several years now.
“DOC said that it was too difficult and too expensive to adopt a national commission recommendations and so the court allowed them to at least devise their own plan but as stated in the report they’ve not devised a report since 2009 and 2010 and consequently we’re in this position now because no one has addressed the issue from within,” Cruz told PNC.
Meanwhile Senator Brant Mccreadie thinks he’s found a solution to DOC’s woes. The senator says he’s found an existing law that would allow for the reconstruction of the prison to get off the ground quickly by allowing the government to enter into lease back agreements.
“We found 5 GCA its the Public Safety Facilities Construction Initiation Act of 2005,” McCreadie announced. “Now that’s the good news that the mandate has already been passed into law that we can move forward and build a new prison.”
McCreadie believes building a new prison would allow for the implementation of better rehabilitation programs, a reduction in overtime, the ability for doc to stop paying for housing at off-island prisons. And ultimately he say’s the reconstruction would help DOC avoid receivership.