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Tourism unaffected; spending report ignored; dumping grounds not being sprayed

By Johnnie Rosario

(Tumon, Guam) Tourism has yet to be affected by news of the Dengue outbreak on Guam. The Governor’s Office is going to ignore the law requiring the governor to report her expenditures of emergency public funds on Dengue. And tires being dumped at Global Recycling on Batulo Road from Dengue-infested collections sites aren’t being sprayed at the dump site.

Kandit last week asked Governor Lou Leon Guerrero whether Guam Visitors Bureau is reporting cancellations of tourist reservations to Guam in the wake of the growing Dengue crisis. The governor acknowledged the concern and said she would check with GVB for answers on this.

This afternoon, governor’s director of policy Carlo Branch told Kandit News, “There seem to be no real change in our arrival or booking flow. A lot of of our tourism mix is wholesale travel and is booked weeks or months in advance. We are monitoring the situation but I’m aware that all statistics are a lagging indicator.”

Governor’s Office needs time to submit report

Last night Kandit reported the absence of a required report due to the Legislature September 18 detailing the expenditures Ms. Leon Guerrero has made since her declaration of an emergency September 13. The Speaker’s Office was even unaware of the law on this.

Mr. Branch told Kandit, “[The Bureau of Budget Management and Research] is aware of both the statutory provision and the requirement in the [Executive Order]. Both provisions require that the report be submitted five days after such transactions. These transactions are ongoing. As such, the report will come after the transactions attendant to each EO are fully executed.”

Batulo Road residents concerned about Dengue-infested refuse being dumped in their area

Leyton Borja, whose family lives along Batulo Road in Dededo, took to Facebook this morning to report that residents of the area are becoming concerned about the dumping of Dengue-infested refuse collected from other areas at nearby Global Recycling.

The refuse, once dumped at the site along Batulo, which is a Chamorro Land Trust property, is not sprayed with insecticide to control the mosquito population.

Mr. Branch sought to allay concerns, telling Kandit of the tires and refuse, “My personal understanding is that the goal is to limit breeding grounds as these vessels can hold standing water. Once they are emptied and protected from further standing water—they no longer pose a threat.”

It is unclear where else Dengue refuse is being dumped throughout the island, or whether these sites are being sprayed with insecticide to kill the mosquitos.

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