Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Guthertz: DEIS planners didn’t do their homework

Guthertz: DEIS planners didn’t do their homework

Friday, 12 February 2010 03:45
Variety News Staff

(Legislature) -- Senator Judith P. Guthertz has added to four earlier comment papers on the draft environmental impact statement on the military buildup with a lengthy list of errors in the draft study and numerous recommendations “to establish goodwill and trust of the people of Guam for the buildup and mitigate the sociocultural impacts” of the buildup.

Guthertz has frequently said that a “two-Guams outcome, in which military members inside the fenceline would live in the first world while Guam residents outside live in third world squalor would not be acceptable. She noted that elaborate recreational and educational facilities planned for the bases should not be located deep inside the bases with no access to the Guam public.

As one of her basic complaints about the draft impact report, Guthertz asks where the numbers of 8,600 Marines and 2,000 transient Marines to be relocated here came from. The draft cites no source for the numbers.

Guthertz points out that portions of the study contain a variety of errors in describing Guam history and its present government. One particular howler concerns World War II. “The Navy’s administration of Guam was disrupted during WWII, when in 1941, following the invasion of Pearl Harbor, Japanese military forces bombed Guam.”

“Every American should know that the Japanese did not invade Pearl Harbor,” Guthertz said.

On another issue that is sure to come up with the arrival of the Marine contingent, Guthertz said the military should settle its differences over drinking ages. Sailors on the Navy Base must be 21, while airmen at Andersen AFB can drink at 18. Given that Guam’s drinking age is 18 and unlikely to change, the stage is set for problems when Navy and Marine personnel spend time off base.

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