Governor vetoes Bill 431, confident MCOG more than capable of serving senior citizens
March 9, 2012
Governor Eddie Baza Calvo is confident in the Mayors Council of Guam and their ability to provide affordable, quality care for the island’s manamko¢.  Recent events involving what was perceived as a potential disruption of services for the island’s senior citizens prompted the 31st Guam Legislature to pass emergency legislation as a stop-gap measure to ensure the continuation of a contract with the Government of Guam Association of Retired Persons/ SPIMA.
In the best interest of Guam’s manamko¢, lawmakers subsequently passed Bill No. 431, introduced by Senator Dennis Rodriguez, Jr.  However, DPHSS Director Jim Gillan, recognizing the insufficient funding for the GGARP/SPIMA contract back in October, 2011, successfully negotiated an alternative solution to continue senior citizens services with village mayors when the vendor rejected the lower fee.
Governor Calvo vetoed the emergency legislation today.
“I thank Senator Rodriguez for wanting to ensure uninterrupted services for the manamko¢ but, the MOU with the mayors ensures the continuity of senior services at a reasonable cost for our government,” Governor Calvo said.  “We’ve effectively managed this situation, we’ve been working with the mayors throughout this process and they’ve been doing a great job with our seniors.  I see no need to move forward with Bill No. 431,” Governor Calvo said.
In October, 2011, DPHSS informed the non-profit organization GGARP/SPIMA of insufficient funding for their contract and asked to renegotiate.  However, DPHSS was forced to find alternative service providers willing to operate senior citizens services within the department’s limited financial capability when GGARP/SPIMA refused the reduced contract price.
In his veto message, Governor Calvo makes it clear that it is solely the executive branch’s authority to choose whether executive branch agencies enter into agreements with other government agencies for services or proceeds with the competitive solicitation process.
“Thus, while I can appreciate the Legislature’s desire to address what it believed to be an emergency situation, I must steadfastly defend the reach and authority of my Office, even if your motives may have been above reproach,” the governor wrote in his veto letter transmitted with the return of Bill 431.
The MOU, signed by then Acting Governor Ray Tenorio, ensures that manamko’ services will continue for the next three months through the Mayor’s Council of Guam.
Contact Natalie Quinata at 475-9309 or 488-6013 for more information.

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