Democratic candidate clarifies opposition to foster home project
As the race for governor heats up, dirty politics, as expected, has reared its ugly head. The Republican Party has tuned up its campaign, running a political ad in a local publication, assailing the Democratic Party’s candidate Lourdes Leon Guerrero for opposing the construction of a foster home facility in Tamuning.
The political ad billed “Lou said No” was paid for by Lt. Gov. Ray Tenorio's campaign team and published in the Pacific Daily News on Monday.
Smarting from her Republican opponent’s attack, Leon Guerrero clarified that she opposed the proposed construction site and not the project itself.
The project was proposed to be built on a Chamorro Land Trust cliffline property in Oka Point, which Leon Guerrero said was not a safe location for a foster home facility.
“I live in Tamuning but I don’t live across the cliffline,” Leon Guerrero told a press conference. “The reason I opposed it is because it’s not safe for children. There is a cliffline and there are rocks there.”
Additionally, she added, the property "fronts a heavily trafficked road with cars travelling way above the speed limit." She concluded, "It would be a tragic event if a child wanders off to explore, leaves the supervised site and travels off to the cliff side area, loses footing and falls. Or while playing outside, the child dashes out to the road and gets hit by a speeding car."
The project was proposed as part of the land exchange program under Bill 332-32 introduced on May 6, 2014.
On Dec. 14, 2014, Leon Guerrero, a former senator, wrote Speaker Benjamin Cruz, enumerating her concerns about the project’s proposed location. As mandated by a substitute version of Bill 332-32, the legislature subsequently passed a resolution on Feb. 23, 2015, calling on the government of Guam to identify "a suitable lot to effectuate an exchange of government-owned property reserved for the Department of Public Health and Social Services.” The Tamuning location was eventually rejected as the site for Rigalu Foundation’s facility project.
“The other side begins spinning this to their advantage,” Leon Guerrero said. "This latest attack by the opposition continues to highlight their flagrant disregard for the truth. This latest false attack ad by the Tenorio Ada campaign is even more offensive considering my family's commitment to the Rigalu Foundation.”