Sen. James Espaldon and Bureau of Budget Management and Research Director Lester Carlson, debate a calculation method on determining how a tax increase could affect the spending of a Guam household.
On June 4, on the Patty Arroyo Show on Newstalk K-57, hosted by Jon Fernandez, Lt. Gov. Ray Tenorio, while promoting his tuition free (UOG and GCC) platform, stated that it would be possible to do in part because, and I quote, “our government finances are in order.” He went on to mention that it would only take 1 percent of the current budget, $9 million, to accomplish this. He then stated that the full details have yet to be worked out.
Our government finances are in order? Seriously? Has he been living off island for the last … oh, I don’t know, five months, or even closer to the truth, last seven years?
I am getting sick and tired of having politicians insult my intelligence (our collective intelligence) for their own gain. I am not going to list all the tax increases and shut downs that have occurred since February because if you are not aware of them, you have obviously been hanging out with the lieutenant governor in a cave somewhere that has no reception or Wi-Fi.
As an educator, I would love to see tuition-free opportunities for our island residents, but I am also a realist and a taxpayer. Here are a few questions for the lieutenant governor to mull over as he works out the details of this ludicrous, pie-in-the-sky vote getting propaganda plea:
Did UOG, GCC and Guam DOE receive all of their 2017-2018 fiscal budget allotments from GovGuam?
What about past year’s allotments under this administration?
Let me help you out with that last question, lieutenant governor: Guam DOE, GCC and UOG failed to receive $16.5 million that was part of their government of Guam budgets for fiscal 2017. And you want to add $ 9 million to that deficit?
I am guessing, based on past experiences, that the details of your program would involve borrowing $9 million every year to pay for your election promise … and then raising taxes somewhere to help pay off for more debt that we can’t afford.
Our government finances are in order? Get a clue. Or stop lying, please.
Jim Healy is a resident of Malesso and a history teacher at Simon Sanchez High School.
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