Governor Calvo provides the following reaction to both the cascade of Cabinet members volunteering pay cuts, and to Sen. Chris Duenas’ introduction of legislation to cut the legislature’s budget:
“Cutting spending is not easy. No politician benefits from cutting spending. But we weren’t elected to benefit from our decisions. We were elected to make the right decisions. I commend Sen. Chris Duenas for his bold measure to cut spending at the legislature by $1 million annually. If passed, that will bring us closer to where we need to be.
“I’m also very humbled by the outpour of personal support from my Cabinet. So far I’ve received notices from directors Adonis Mendiola, Tommy Morrison, John Rios, John Camacho, Joseph Artero Cameron, Dave Camacho, and Tony Lamorena to cut their pay by at least 10 percent. Even the Adjutant General, Maj. Gen. Benny Paulino has taken a pay cut. They are dedicating the savings to tax refunds. I cannot recall an instance in Guam history when directors generously came forward to cut their pay for the betterment of others. This is selfless. It reminds me of the day I met with my senior staff last year and they graciously agreed to cut their pay as well.
“I know these savings are just a fraction of the $171 million cash shortfall we need to fill, but the cuts drive the point home that leadership starts from the top and that every bit counts. This is real leadership. The legislature should take note of what these leaders are willing to do, and the sacrifices they are willing to make for our people.
“There won’t be enough money for tax refunds if senators don’t allow me to cut spending. If they don’t like the solutions I proposed, then they can’t just complain about the solutions. They need to offer an alternative solution. If they don’t like the reduction in benefits, fine; replace it with another spending cut. If they don’t like the early retirement program, fine; replace it with something else. It is unacceptable to do nothing but complain. And, quite honestly, there aren’t many options left except what becomes more and more inevitable with each passing day of inaction from the legislature.”

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