Guam Civil Service Increases Security For Meetings

admin's picture

Persons, bags to be checked, off-duty police may be hired

By Mark-Alexander Pieper

HAGÅTÑA, Guam (Pacific Daily News, May 21, 2013) – Everyone who enters a Civil Service Commission (CSC) hearing on Guam will be subject to searches, said agency Executive Director Tony Lamorena.

"We've put into full effect our security protocols," Lamorena said.

"Effective immediately, everyone who enters a hearing will be checked with a metal detector and all parcels and purses will also be checked. Anyone who refuses will not be allowed in."

Lamorena met with police yesterday to discuss security measures for the commission, after commissioners last week testified they were being threatened during and after certain hearings.

Lamorena said police have been provided the commission's hearing schedule and also discussed the possibility of the commission hiring off-duty police officers to provide security during meetings.

At roughly $30 an hour to hire an off-duty officer, Lamorena's preliminary estimate is that it would cost the commission about $10,000 per year to pay for the security. Lamorena said his figure is based on a twice weekly, three-hour hearing schedule. He noted, however, that sometimes the commission meets more than twice a week.

The commission also will be videotaping all hearings as an added security measure. Lamorena said the commission is likely to request either an appropriation or a transfer of funds to pay for security for the remainder of the fiscal year.

The commission hears appeals from classified government of Guam workers who object disciplinary actions taken against them. The commission's role is to enforce the government's personnel rules and regulations and to shield government employees from political retribution.

Last week, the Legislature heard a bill that would allow commissioners to hold closed-door deliberations -- without needing to transcribe what was discussed.

The bill was withdrawn after Gov. Eddie Calvo issued a strongly worded statement criticizing the commission for testifying in support of a bill, which he said is contrary to his administration's stance on government transparency.

The governor on Thursday issued an order to police Chief Fred Bordallo to investigate the commission's allegations that they have been hassled. Police spokesman Officer A.J. Balajadia said the police hadn't received formal complaints from the commission.

Lamorena confirmed the commission had not filed any formal reports with police. The commission requested for the bill to be created because there have been a safety concerns from long before he took charge of the agency.

Rate this article: 
No votes yet

Add new comment