Guam – While the programmatic agreement or PA has been signed guaranteeing 24/7 access to the Pagat village and caves it is still unclear what the definition of Pagat village is.
The copy of the PA we received from the governor’s office does not indicate what is meant by Pagat village. As you may recall PNC hiked to the Pagat caves and the latte site near the caves. We also hiked further north along the coastline until we came across two more latte sites. While we were still in the Pagat area it is still unclear whether or not these latte sites are considered part of Pagat village.
Nevertheless after months of opposition Guam State Historic Preservation Officer Lynda Aguon signed the PA. So why the change of heart? While Aguon did not return phone calls today PNC did obtain a copy of a letter she sent to the legislature explaining her reason for signing. In the letter Aguon says “Attorney Arthur Clark listened to me and constantly sought my advice and comments in hopes of producing an acceptable document to some if not to all. Not once did Clark dictate what should go in the document.” She went on to say, “The final document although not perfect provides for all the signatories and the public to be engaged every step of the way as an assurance that our historic properties are treated with special care, recognition and respect; that access to them is not a privilege but a right.”
Senator’s Rory Respicio and Judi Guthertz are pleased that Lynda Aguon has remained as the Guam SHPO and that she was not pressured into signing the PA. “We left it to her to work with attorney Arthur Clark and to just do what she feels most comfortable doing so as a senator who stood up for her I’m just happy that this ordeal is over and that she was comfortable in signing the programmatic agreement,” said Respicio.
“I have to be prayerful that Lynda Aguon who is our State Historic Preservation Officer gave her due diligence to ensure that this agreement is respectful and fair to the people of Guam,” said Respicio adding that “People think that lattes and other important artifacts are only relegated to the Pagat the immediate Pagat area but that’s not the case up in Rt 15 there are other sites and other places within that whole range planned for area that have cultural artifacts and as a matter of fact some of my staff were up there and on the southern side of the area discovered additional lattes that were not known to be there previously.” 3:08
Senator Guthertz says that she still believes the military should stay within their current footprint but is also willing to work with military officials to resolve their training needs.