Governor Calvo spoke with residents temporarily sheltered at the Astumbo Gym.
With him were Chris Duenas, Guam Housing Corporation administrator, and Caesar Villanueva special assistant. The Governor has charged Duenas with transitioning the 52 displaced families from their current temporary shelter to permanent housing.
“I was able to speak with the families and I want to make sure we get them the help they need to get permanent housing,” the Governor stated. “We have some families who are actively seeking housing. Others are in a slightly different situation and need additional assistance.”
Another concern is the displaced families who are citizens of federally associated states, which means they are not eligible for federal emergency assistance. This was an issue the Governor raised to visiting Department of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke and Assistant Secretary of the Interior for Insular Affairs Douglas Domenech. The Governor will be following up on that conversation with a letter to the Secretary as well as FSM President Peter Christian.
“With the onset of the storm and with the current situation these residents I want to see if we can finally come to some resolution to help these folks. We had a similar situation in a previous typhoon – we were able to help them though it wasn’t easy. I do not want these folks left out in the cold,” Governor Calvo stated.
The Governor also met with Mayor Melissa Savares, thanking her and her team, and the Mayors Council — as well as Department of Education employees – for their assistance with helping those who were displaced through the storm.
Duenas stated that during the discussion with the families and the mayor they shared a mix of situations.
“The real emphasis on the program is the three tiers: emergency, temporary, and permanent with the ultimate goal that we have as we assist these families being permanent,” Duenas said. “I want to make sure all of the housing programs are brought together so we can provide as much assistance as possible and getting them prepared for housing so we have a permanent solution for them.”