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PRESS RELEASE (10.5.10)_ Governor John P. de Jongh, Jr. Re Retroactive Partial Payment

PRESS RELEASE (10.5.10)_ Governor John P. de Jongh, Jr. Re Retroactive Partial Payment

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Short Link to related VIYAC Facebook Event: Short Link for this Event: http://tinyurl.com/VIYACProgram8GvtAccountability
Short Link to related VIYAC Facebook Event: Short Link for this Event: http://tinyurl.com/VIYACProgram8GvtAccountability

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Published by: Virgin Islands Youth Advocacy Coalition on Oct 06, 2010
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Opening Statement by Governor John P. de Jongh, Jr. at a Press Conference Regarding Retroactive Pay for Government Workershttp://governordejongh.com/news/releases/2010/10/opening-statement-retroactive-pay-press-conference.html[10/6/2010 6:39:53 PM]
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----------------------------------------------------------------------------FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASEOctober 5, 2010
Opening Statement by Governor John P. de Jongh, Jr.at a Press Conference Regarding Retroactive Pay for Government Workers
Good Morning and Welcome,Before I introduce some other speakers this morning and take your questions, I would like to make a briefstatement.Most times, the work of government goes unnoticed and unrecognized and that is an accepted part of the job. However, every once in a while, we are able to make an announcement -- on a commitment to a groupof people who have worked extremely hard and waited an extremely long period of time -- that accomplishessomething important, which is why we are here today.This morning I am pleased to announce an important step forward that will make a tremendous difference inthe lives of many, many Virgin Islanders. This step will make a financial difference to individuals and theirfamilies in our community during what has been a very difficult period for all of us in the Virgin Islands. It isa action that has long been promised and similarly ignored by many, but what the Lt Governor and I havetaken as rightfully owed and must be resolved.It will also hopefully show that we can, when we work together, find solutions to our problems, even some ofour older and more difficult ones.And so today it is with considerable pride that I announce that the Administration has completed the complexprocess of verifying employee account balances and completed negotiations with financial institutions toimplement the requirements of Act No. 6984 that require a partial payment of the retroactive salaryobligations due to Government employees based on funding from the Insurance Guaranty Fund. The keysenators involved in developing the methodology and passing the legislation are Senators Carlton Dowe,Usie Richards, Louis Patrick Hill, and Celestino White. I commend them for their hard work and dedication toensuring the passage of Bill No. 27-0131.I am pleased to announce that nine days from today, on October 14th - $36,000,000 dollars will bedeposited into accounts, or mailed to 10,718 present and past employees in long overdue retroactive wages.More than 10,700 checks to current and former government workers as a substantial down payment on theretroactive wages that they are owed by this government and have too long been promised without anyresults.I am also personally proud of this announcement because, for Lt. Governor Greg Francis and me, it issomething we can point to as a Promise Made and a Promise Kept by our Administration.These payments were made possible because of the work of many – including some of those who are herewith us today and some who are not. I also want to recognize the contributions of the Senators whosupported our efforts and made possible what we have accomplished by authorizing the process anddesignating the funding source.The issue of Retro has hung over our government for more years than anyone wishes to count and it hasalso been wrapped up in a tremendous amount of political rhetoric and often a great deal ofmisrepresentation.But, as I previously mentioned it was through the work, the very hard work of the advisors to the RetroactiveWage Commission: Gloria Joseph, Ruby Amey, Anna Sille, Glenda Goodings and Aloha Morales, and theirteam who went through hundreds of thousands of documents to determine what was owed to whom. Onlywith this information --- which each and every employee, or former employee, will have an opportunity toreview, confirm and indeed correct, if necessary -- was it possible to determine the way forward.The Commission then made their recommendations which it is my pleasure to announce today: That eachand every person eligible and qualified for retroactive payments will receive a check for the first 16% of the

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