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$11M sought for proposed body to fight drug-related crimes on Guam

By Pacific Island Times News Staff

Sen. William A. Parkinson has proposed a bill that would tap the government of Guam's unobligated revenue surplus to fund an inter-agency task force that would combat drug-related crimes on the island.

Bill 251-37, which seeks to appropriate $11.3 for the Guam Police Department, would complement Sen. Chris Duenas' proposal for the creation of the MAULEG Task Force.

William Parkinson

The January 2024 Consolidated Revenue and Expenditure Report showed there was $11.3 million in unappropriated excess revenues.

“I want to thank Senator Chris Duenas for introducing Bill 250-37 to create the MAULEG Task Force and get to the root cause of much of the crime and suffering on our island," Parkins said.

"When he asked me to help find funding for his initiative, I was on board. It’s not about party lines, it’s about coming together to get the job done,” he added.

He vowed to ensure that the proposed task force would be effective and transparent.

Duenas thanked Parkinson for backing the MAULEG proposal.

"As much as I support his, and look forward to more bi-partisan efforts that will prove that regardless of differences, we as your elected leaders will work together to deliver the best results for the people of Guam," he said.

Bill 251-37 strikes at what has long been recognized as the core of the crime problem on Guam.

Recent statistics from the Chief Medical Examiner show that there were 37 deaths last year due to methamphetamine overdose. Meth was also a contributing factor in 18 fatal accidents last year.

"It’s time we get serious about eliminating the scourge of meth. Meth is not just a problem; it's a poison, eating away at the fabric of our society. With this bipartisan effort, we take direct aim at cutting off this poison at its source," Parkinson said.

"Let's be clear: The cost of inaction far exceeds $11 million. Every dollar invested in drug enforcement is a step towards reclaiming our streets from the shadows of meth," he added.

The legislation is co-sponsored by Senator Chris Duenas, Vice Speaker Tina Muna Barnes, Senator Jesse Lujan, and Senator Dwayne San Nicolas. 

Parkinson originally met with Guam Visitors Bureau President Carl Gutierrez on Jan. 19 to discuss crime prevention and public safety.

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