Guam lawmakers question $20 million pay raises
HAGATNA, Guam (AP) — Guam lawmakers are telling a government administrator they need a breakdown of costs to approve $20 million in raises for government workers.
Pacific Daily News reported (http://bit.ly/1fhZmUg ) Department of Administration Director Benita Manglona couldn’t specify Friday how the $20 million figure was reached.
Senate Vice Speaker Benjamin Cruz told Manglona there has to be a breakdown for each department to justify approving the $20 million.
Cruz and other territorial senators wanted to know, in part, how much money would go to the Education Department. The agency takes up most of the territorial government’s payroll.
Cruz called for a one-hour break from a legislative hearing to allow Manglona to obtain a breakdown.
“We’ll try,” she said.
But Cruz insisted the breakdown be provided.
“No, you will get those numbers because ... $20 million, it didn’t just fall from the sky,” Cruz said. “You have to have one plus five plus four plus eight plus two. ... How did you get to the $20 million?”
Manglona became defiant as senators continued to press her for a breakdown. She says previous pay raises were approved without the same scrutiny.
“Back in 2010, you didn’t ask these questions. You approved the plan and you let the administration handle it when our finances were in terrible shape,” Manglona said. “We have done well in managing the cash.”
The raises approved in 2010 were put on hold by Gov. Eddie Calvo’s administration amid financial troubles for the territory.
Information from: Pacific Daily News: http://www.guampdn.com