June 29, 2018
Hagåtña — Agreeing to work together for a more peaceful western Pacific region, Governor Calvo and Minister of Defense for the Japan government discussed the buildup on Guam in preparation for the military realignment.
Minister Itsunori Onodera said the relocation of U.S. forces from Okinawa to Guam is an important project, noting that pushing forward requires Guam’s understanding: “I would like to ask for your cooperation.”
Governor Calvo said he understands that this realignment would help the people of Okinawa, adding that “it would be in the best interest of Japan and the United States in building stability throughout the Western Pacific.”
“And though there’s a lot of progress, there’s been a little bit of delay. We’re looking forward to working with the U.S. and Japan to ensure a smooth transition,” the Governor responded to the Minister of Defense.
Governor Calvo has been watching a new immigrations policy floating around Congress and the White House. The bill would have provided relief to employers across the nation in terms of allowing H2B employees to work in various industries, from farming to tourism. The Governor, wrote to Congresswoman Bordallo asking her to find ways to introduce Guam’s need for skilled workers into future legislation.
He also wrote to Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) who sits on the Committee on Armed Services, and to Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) who sits in the Committee on Appropriations and is a member of subcommittees for Department of Homeland Security, and Department of Defense. In his letters, the Governor included recommended verbiage for future Legislation as national lawmakers and the White House engage in immigration policy discussions.
There were 45 H2B workers who just arrived on Guam to augment local skilled workers on construction projects – unfortunately the approved workers so far have only been for military projects through the NDAA that was signed into law earlier this year. This hasn’t helped with projects for local businesses, government and people.
“What about civilian projects, housing for families, recreational facilities and government infrastructure?” the Governor has asked.
Governor Calvo, though he has always supported the military buildup on Guam and believes it is good for Guam and the nation as well as our allies, withdrew his support for buildup projects unless the federal government can live up to the “One Guam” approach agreed upon in 2011. Immigrations officials have only begun allowing skilled foreign laborers to Guam under the NDAA and only for military-buildup related projects. The Governor has been fighting to include non-military projects.
While in Japan, Governor Calvo is also meeting with leaders from the visitor industry as well as potential investors.
June 29, 2018