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Governor counting on Speaker Terlaje to back Guam hospital on ancestral lands

By Pacific Island Times News Staff

Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero is hopeful that Speaker Therese Terlaje would support the administration's Adacao alternative site for a new hospital.

After giving up on her plan to build a new medical facility on the Navy-owned Eagles Field property in Mangilao, the governor identified ancestral properties in the Adacao area in the same village.

A press release from the governor's office revisited Terlaje's remarks in April, when the Guam Legislature held a public hearing on the proposed lease of Eagles Field.

“There was a proposal by the Ancestral Lands director that we have crown lands right next to Eagles Field if they love that area so much," the press release quoted Terlaje as saying.

"Crown lands meaning it belongs to the ancestral lands, they’re supposed to be leasing it out. They could lease it out to the government of Guam if we want, and win-win all around—the location they want. And we are leasing property and we own it. Somebody owns that in the end, right? Ancestral Lands Commission. At least it’s the government of Guam," Terlaje said.

In April, Terlaje sought consideration of the Adacao site as an alternative to Eagles Field, which did not receive legislative approval.

According to the governor's office, the governor "heard this call for compromise and joins the Speaker in recognizing the efficacy of this site, which provides space to grow a medical complex that not only meets our immediate needs but looks ahead to meet the growing needs of our children and grandchildren."

“As has been said before, it is the duty of every parent and grandparent to build something solid so our children can have something better,” Leon Guerrero said. “I’m tired of government policy that thinks only about the present and then wonders why we still have the same problems in the future.”

Concerns with the Ypao Point site include a lack of buildable land to meet the hospital’s current needs or build for the future, the potential need for expanded utility infrastructure, increased traffic congestion, and the presence of a major fault line.

“I ask our lawmakers to vote ‘yes’ to Bill 184 to allow for the purchase or lease of land for the medical complex,” added the governor.

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