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  Dear Friends:

The Guam Legislature has been in session since last Thursday, October 23. Here is a quick rundown of some floor debate and voting highlights:

* Bill 133 – Repeals GRT and other tax increases passed in PL 27-05 in February:
Unfortunately, the majority senators in the legislature voted against referring this initiative to the people for a vote. My position on the tax increases has always been very clear: I was against raising taxes in February and I am for reducing them now. Why is it that when the government thinks it needs more money, it always looks to your wallet first? The Republican minority believes raising taxes should come after first reducing overall government expenses, including reforms, reorganization and privatization. This tax increase is much too heavy a burden on small businesses that can not afford to pay it and could result in more job losses in the private sector.

* Bill 63 – Visible GRT
Allows businesses the choice to display Gross Receipts Tax outside of the price of the product or service. Example: Product is $100. GRT is printed at $6 (6%).

* Bill 49 – Compiler of Laws
This bill moves the Compiler of Laws to the Supreme Court from the Attorney General’s Office. This action should make the publishing of laws more frequent and accessible to the people of Guam.

* Bill 96 – Creates recycling fund
Creates a fund to be used for recycling programs.

* Bill 153 – Revises Retirement Fund board elections
Makes changes to the way members on the Retirement Fund board of directors are chosen.

Bill 133 was defeated along party lines in a floor vote; Bills 63, 49, 96 and 153 should be voted on in a couple if days. I anticipate we’ll be in session through this week.

Please give me a call or e-mail me to discuss these issues or any other issues on your mind. I’m interested in your thoughts and ideas.


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