• By Bruce Lloyd

Leon Guerrero vows to prosecute tax cheats if she wins

Ticket says Guam voters are disillusioned by the performance and scandals of GovGuam agencies

The Democratic Guam gubernatorial ticket of Lou Leon Guerrero and Josh Tenorio unveiled an extensive platform Monday and told reporters and boisterous supporters that should the team win in November, officials at the Department of Revenue and Taxation can expect them to walk through their front door on “day one” of the administration, demanding answers to chronic failures to fully collect taxes.

Otherwise, Leon Guerrero suggested, needed reforms can’t be paid for or carried out.

Leon Guerrero, who is President of the Bank of Guam, announced plans to create a tax recovery unit with expertise and powers that will go far beyond the current, recently announced Calvo administration tax amnesty effort about which she asked, “Why wasn’t that done years ago?” She pledged that the administration, if it comes to be, would no longer be borrowing on the bond markets to bail out GovGuam short term debts, an expensive proposition in the long run for tax payers.

She also says the new administration will make known and present to the public a clear, day-to-day picture of the state of Guam finances, rather than tolerating practices of juggling the books to cover shortfalls.

If the persistent tax cheaters and avoiders persist, they will face consequences, including prosecutions led by the Attorney General. “There has been a situation where [prosecution] was happening, but all of a sudden it was dropped… I think it’s criminal that people who are allowed to do business on Guam and to have a good income are not paying their privileges in doing business on Guam.”

Leon Guerrero, also a former nurse and Guam Memorial Hospital board member, is particularly sensitive to health issues and the possibility that GMH will lose accreditation and loss of Medicare, Medicaid certification in October.

“Let’s not bicker around with investigation,” Leon Guerrero said. “Let’s first look at what we can do right now to provide the measures, the resources, the funding, whatever money is needed to make those corrective actions happen. That’s why I’m calling for a state of emergency [at GMH].

“This isn’t a political issue, it’s a community health issue. And if we cannot provide the funding for the hospital and it spirals down with no funding, what are we going to do as the people of Guam?”

Lieutenant Governor candidate Josh Tenorio

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