Political supporters gather in front of Okkodo Elementary School in Dededo on Oct. 17, 2020. Photo by Mar-Vic Cagurangan
The REALTORS® Political Action Committee (RPAC) has unveiled the list of senatorial candidates it will support based on their positions on issues affecting the real estate industry and Guam’s economy in this coronavirus-stricken election year.
RPAC is the advocacy arm of the Guam Association of REALTORS®, which represents over 500 members.
“The Guam Association of REALTORS® is a bi-partisan group; it is important for us to actively participate in the political process and support candidates who will help protect and promote the interests of the real estate industry,” said Clare Delgado, 2020 GAR president. “Every policy that comes out of the Guam Legislature affects not only our industry but the entire community as well.”
RPAC is endorsing candidates from both Democratic and Republican parties for the 2020 Guam senatorial elections. The committee has selected three incumbent Democrats and three incumbent Republicans.
The endorsements are based on the candidates’ responses to RPAC’s comprehensive survey that covered a wide range of issues including real estate, Covid-19 recovery strategy, tax policy, bureaucratic reform and the government’s fiscal management.
RPAC backs candidates who understand and support issues related to real estate industry, private property rights and sustainable smart growth initiatives.
The RPAC Trustees and Legislative Committee have approved to support the following candidates:
Tina Muna Barnes (Incumbent) James Moylan (Incumbent)
Therese Terlaje (Incumbent) Telo Taitague (Incumbent)
Jose San Agustin (Incumbent) Mary Torres (Incumbent)
Fred Bordallo Frank Blas
David Duenas Ken Leon Guerrero
Frank Leon Guerrero Vincent Borja
Since 1969 RPAC has promoted the election of pro-REALTOR® candidates across the United States.
“As part of the National Association of REALTORS®, America’s largest and most influential trade association, the Guam Association of REALTORS® echoes the objectives of bi-partisan support to credible and respectable candidates that forge building strong communities, protecting property rights and homeownership, promoting a vibrant business community and advancing public policies that safeguard all the fundamentals that REALTORS® champion,” said Shawn Blas, state RPAC chair and 2020 president-elect.
The GAR-RPAC Trustees advance the following issues through its campaign:
a. Support rollback of business privilege tax from 5 percent to 4 percent.
b. Repeal the increase in property taxes levied on improvements on land property valued at $1 million or more.
c. Support E-notary Bill No. 369-35 for the facilitation of real estate transactions.
d. Support military buildup.
e. Introduce and support legislation that will deem the entire real estate industry, including both private and government sectors, to be declared as essential service.
Below is the list of questions that the candidates were asked to determine those that would be supported by GAR:
- Will you support the preparation and passage of legislation to classify the real estate industry (both private and government sectors) as essential service?
- Will you support the classification of GLUC application processing systems as essential services?
- Will you support the creation, introduction and passage of a bill to change the operation of the Guam Legislature from full time to part time?
- Will you support the repeal of the 1 percent increase in the BPT, i.e. restore the BPT rate to 4 percent?
- Are you in favor of increasing taxes and/or fees to deal with the government revenue shortfall caused by Covid-19 imposed restrictions on private sector and business operations?
- Will you support a significant reduction in government expenditures including payroll during Covid-19 lockdowns and PCOR2 period in order to keep the government solvent?
- Are you in favor of increasing the local minimum wage?
- Are you in favor of reducing taxes and fees to assist in the start of small businesses and in maintaining their viability?
- Are you in favor of the impending military buildup and the Marines’ relocation?
- Are you satisfied with the governor’s handling of the Covid-19 pandemic to date?
- What functions of the government of Guam do you believe should be privatized?