24 Jul 2009

Guam sends clear message to US military over lands

3:06 pm on 24 July 2009

Guam Senator Judith Guthertz says the US military will no longer be allowed to expropriate land in Guam at will as it did after the Second World War.

Senator Guthertz has been meeting with the Joint Guam Program Office leadership to discuss latest plans for the pending US military build-up on Guam.

The US military is to transfer 8,000 marines and 9,000 of their family members from Japan over the next five years, and continues to survey land it says it will need for various purposes.

The military already owns a third of Guam's land and Senator Guthertz says Guam's message to the US military over future needs is clear:

"If you need land here, you're going to have to make a very strong case for it. Private land owners have the right to deal with you if they wish to or not to deal with you. When it comes to government land, you're going to have to deal with the legislature because we passed a law that says there shall be no speculation on public land for the military. If the military is going to need land, they're going to have to have their request approved by the Guam legislature."

Senator Judith Guthertz