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Rep. Tina Sablan: Subpoena the governor

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REPRESENTATIVE Tina Sablan said the House Special Committee on Fiscal Review of Executive Expenditures should subpoena the governor, adding he is the only one who can answer most of the lawmakers’ questions.

In an interview, Sablan said there are at least 17 different credit cards that the governor used for  his reimbursed expenses.

A member of the special committee, she said when they submitted their Open Government Act request “we specifically asked [the Department of] Finance in January not to redact the last four digits of the credit card numbers that appeared on the governor’s receipts.”

But Finance redacted the records, she added, “and altered [the] original records.”

She said, “That is the problem that brought us to the hearings today [Monday] and last Friday.”

Another member of the panel, Rep. Luis John Castro, said, “If the governor is really willing to answer questions, then the committee will have to summon him.”

Finance Secretary David DLG Atalig, who appeared before the committee on Monday, said he was not aware that his staffers redacted the information on the physical records that were provided to  lawmakers who made an Open Government Act request.

He said  the Finance staffers who made the redactions were “apologetic” when he asked them about it.

Atalig believes that there are some unredacted records on the department's server.

Rep. Ralph Yumul, the committee chairman, said they will have to ask Finance director of administrative services Margaret Bertha Torres again to appear before the panel.

He said she handled the reimbursements and should have the unredacted records. She could also shed light on why the information was redacted, he added.

Vice Speaker Lorenzo Deleon Guerrero, committee vice chairman, said the Finance secretary should also appear before the committee again.

If  the panel cannot get answers from Finance, then they will call the governor in, he added.

 

 

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