The Administration continues to work to improve the quality of life for the people of Guam, which requires good policy.
Currently, the Governor is preparing to meet with federal officials, credit rating agencies and hopefully members of the transition team as the new President is sworn into office. These meetings aim to remove or reduce the impact of federal bureaucracy to our island, from near 100-percent denials of H2B visas that are creating a stall in construction, to ensuring Guam is reimbursed for Earned Income Tax Credits and other mandates. As we’ve stated before, we welcome the senators to work with us to address these and other issues to move our island forward.
Sen. Frank Aguon’s Bill 4 reduces the Governor’s salary to $90,000 a year; that falls below the salary levels of a University of Guam associate professor, Guam Power Authority engineering supervisor, and equipment superintendent of Port Authority of Guam. At the current salary levels, 32, or 15%, of our firefighters make more than the Governor. At $90,000 a year, that number increases to 77%. At the Guam Police Department, a rollback in salary levels would mean 72 of 353, or 20%, of personnel would make more than the Governor.
As the Chief Executive, the Governor, oversees the daily operations of 45 agencies, an annual budget of about $900 million, and is responsible for nearly 4,000 employees (that number grows exponentially if you include Guam Department of Education and its nearly 4,000 employees).
Here are some quick facts about the rollback:
- GovGuam’s annual budget was about $390M in Fiscal 2003. We’ve been very aggressive since coming into Adelup. The Fiscal 2017 budget is about $900M. Meanwhile, a rollback would keep salaries for the Governor, Lt. Governor and their cabinet at 1991 levels.
- “Savings” from Bill 4 amount to about $2,000 a month for the Governor and Lt. Governor, and $47,000 a month for senators. That’s less than 1% of the total monthly personnel salary level of $8.8 million.
- The Competitive Wage Act of 2014 was about correcting disparity and ensuring our executive branch is a competitive employer able to attract talented and qualified individuals. It was about good policy and good government. Members of the Legislature decided to make it a political issue, which harms the government today and in the future.
- If the senator succeeds in the rollback, he will create a system where 76% of the fire department/ 166 firefighters will make more than the Governor of Guam. In addition to this, the CNMI Maga’låhi who makes $120,000 per annum will make $30,000 more than Guam’s Maga’låhi.