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Port Authority Oversight Hearing Addresses Community Concerns on Merit System

Hagåtña, Guam – Senator Telena Cruz Nelson, oversight chair of the Committee on Border Protection and Maritime Transportation, issued the statement below following an Informational Hearing and Oversight Hearing on Tuesday with the Port Authority of Guam:

“As your Senator and as Oversight Chair, I called these hearings to address public concerns surrounding one of our ports of entry. My intent is to ensure that all candidates applying for employment at the Port are vetted and hired in a process that determines whether or not the candidate is qualified for the position and cleared to perform the duties required, regardless of their history. We want to ensure the hiring process is based on merit and fairness, and in accordance with the left and right limits of the law.

I want to state clearly that I believe that our Port employees are dignified and hardworking. This was never in question and it is an injustice to say otherwise. I believe in second chances and that people can change and want to do better for themselves and for their families. Those that have the desire to do so should be supported and given the opportunity to rebuild their lives because that is who we are as a people. We raise each other up and help those who are in need. That is the spirit our elders have instilled in us, the spirit of inafa'maolek.”

In light of the community concerns raised, Senator Nelson conducted an Informational Hearing with the Port Authority of Guam on Jan. 25, 2021, regarding their Drug-Free Workplace Policy, pandemic response and financial progress. This hearing concluded on Tuesday and was immediately followed by an Oversight Hearing regarding the Port Authority’s hiring practices from 2016 to present.


For more information, please contact Tihu Lujan at The Office of Senator

Telena Cruz Nelson at (671) 989-7696 or

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