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NEWS: Janet Maratita fleeced the taxpayers in 2019

By Jacob Nakamura


(Tumon, Guam) When the Commonwealth Legislature was under pressure in December last year to press for an investigation into the governor's corruption and residents began questioning whether legislators themselves were corrupt, Precinct 1 Congresswoman Janet Maratita defiantly said on the House floor:

"Ekua dai sa' ti corrupted yu'"

Ms. Maratita also defiantly refused to disclose her receipts of expenditures of legislative allowances she has received during this legislative term, which began January 2019. Most Republican lawmakers refused to disclose their receipts.


So, instead, Kandit sent an Open Government Act request to the Department of Finance for the documents pertaining to each member's legislative allowances. Finance has responded, and Kandit now has all the records.


Perhaps the reason Ms. Maratita did not want to disclose her receipts, is because those receipts will explain how exactly she spent $50,500 of your money that was released to her in 2019. During the calendar year, the Commonwealth government suffered through a nearly-$100 million budget deficit, and began what is expected to be a $50 million budget deficit.


Though Ms. Maratita understood the financial situation of the people at the time she took these allowances, she was not bashful at all in asking for the money. As a matter of fact, as the budget crisis was growing, Ms. Maratita asked for more money.


In a January 15, 2019 letter to then-Secretary of Finance Larissa Larson, Ms. Maratita requested an allowance of $2,500 per month for January through September.


Then on June 26, 2019, she rescinded the amounts she was requesting from the balance of her first letter's request, and upped the amount to $3,500 a month from July to September.


In a September 11, 2019 letter to Secretary of Finance David Atalig, Ms. Maratita requested the max amount for the remainder of 2019 - $5,000 per month.


Interestingly, Ms. Maratita refers to the monthly allowance in the letters as a monthly subsistence allowance, and not as a legislative allowance that was created to assist the legislators from Tinian and Rota to pay for the cost of working for the taxpayers as they maintain operations in both Saipan and their home islands.


Ms. Maratita lives in Saipan.


This is the first in our series exposing legislative allowance spending as the Commonwealth Legislature refuses to move forward in its duties to investigate the governor.



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7 comentários


KanditNewsGroup
KanditNewsGroup
15 de fev. de 2020

@russmason... Interesting. Never thought of it that way. We'll check out what the law says about this in both Guam and the CNMI.

Curtir

@lowclassislanders

Fine print? Where? When I used to buy cards, nobody said that the balance would be stolen. Ask questions? I called an executive at IT&E and his response was: "You're the first person to bring this up." To their credit, I believe they extended the time on the card to 90 days. I still think it's thievery.


Curtir

RE: Russ Mason.


It's not illegal if the terms are explained somewhere (it's called fine print). Best to know the terms before you get into something so you can avoid it. It's called asking questions.

Curtir

I went to see Ms. Maratita a couple of years ago. I sought her help with the situation involving IT&E "load cards." Here was, and still is, the situation: if you put $10 into your cell phone using one of the cards, if you don't use it up in 30 days, IT&E will steal the balance. This is theft. Ms. Maratita was sympathetic and called in her attorney (forgot her name). Both women agreed it was a lousy situation and promised to look into it, and get back to me. They did nothing.


Note to Kandit News Group: Please look into the thefts which occur routinely by IT&E (now Micronesian Telecom) and Docomo, which has the same practice of theft.…

Curtir

She is well-known around Saipan businesses as a deadbeat. "I just need to go to the ATM, I'll be back in five minutes....." Possible poker addiction.

Curtir
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