Sobti did business with airport while a member of its governing board



By Nancy I. Maanao

news@kanditnews.com


The Guam International Airport did business with Bic Sobti's companies while he was a member of the airport's board.


Mr. Sobti's companies sold employee uniforms, small vehicles, parts for vehicles, thermometers, face masks, windbreaker jackets, dri-fit shirts, sweaters, pleated cargo pants, and rain jackets over the four-year period of documents the airport provided Kandit in response to a Freedom of Information Act request for information.


The airport paid him a total of $77,978.95 during this period.


Mr. Sobti has been a member of the airport's board since 2005, with a break in service between 2011 and 2013. The documents the airport disclosed only go as far back as 2016.


Part of his duties as a board member include the scrutiny and approval of the airport's budget and the policies governing the airport's operations, including procurement.


The documents disclosed do not include any evidence of the solicitation of price quotes, sole source procurement requests, requisitions, or other procurement documents such as invitations for bid or requests for proposal.


According to Guam law, government officers are not allowed to engage in personal business with their agencies. It is a conflict of interest, according to §15205 of Chapter 15, Title 4 Guam Code Annotated. This chapter says the term 'employee' includes board members, and says, in part:


"No employee shall take any official action directly affecting: business or other undertaking in which the employee has a financial interest."
"No employee shall acquire financial interests in any business or other undertaking which the employee has reason to believe may be directly involved in official action to be taken by the employee."
"No employee shall assist any person or business or act in a representative capacity before any territorial agency for any compensation in any transaction involving the Territory."
"No employee shall assist any person or business or act in a representative capacity before a territorial agency for a fee or other compensation, on any bill, contract, claim, or other transaction or proposal involving official action by the agency if the employee has official authority over that agency unless such employee has complied with the disclosure requirements of § 15208."

Gov. Lou Leon Guerrero has nominated Mr. Sobti to continue serving on the airport board for another three years. Vice Speaker Telena Nelson recently conducted a confirmation hearing for Mr. Sobti and asked him whether he had any conflicts of interest. He replied, "None."


The disclosed documents are below:



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