By Eric Rosario
The following is breaking news from the Office of Congressman Michael San Nicolas:
Senate Democrats are floating proposals collectively referred to as the HEROES Act to pay essential employees across the country up to $13/hour on top of their regular pay, capped at a $25,000 salary increase to the end of 2020. "These discussions are preliminary, but serious," opened Congressman San Nicolas. "While we move strongly to help those who lost their jobs or hours, and support businesses with operational SBA loans, we recognize that essential employees keeping the country running during these times need to be supported and recognized," Congressman San Nicolas added. "We will keep the people of Guam updated as proposals shape into legislation; in the meantime we deeply thank essential workers for their sacrifice, and wish for them to know that financial support for your efforts are taking serious shape in the Congress," Congressman San Nicolas concludes.
Meanwhile, government of Guam employees who are working, as of Friday still have not been paid and credited at double pay since the public health emergency began. This is the standard rate of pay GovGuam employees earn during an emergency activation. It is a contractual payroll obligation by the government of Guam Personnel Rules and Regulations, which recently was affirmed by the Guam Legislature in the passage of a bill primarily about hazard pay by Vice Speaker Telena Nelson.
Kandit asked the Governor's Office and the Joint Information Center about the double pay issue at the start of the public health emergency in mid-March. No government official has answered our inquiry and GovGuam employees who continue to work during the emergency still have not been compensated at double pay.