Guam-A Different Perspective

The trade winds have once again begun to pick up-signaling the start of the monsoon season.  Also picking up pace is talk about the Guam Buildup.  

Though throttled down because of the fiscal challenges facing the U.S. Government, Department of Defense officials have been busy recently trying to reassure local residents that the III Marine Expeditionary Force will in fact be coming to Guam in the coming years.  

This discussion isn't new.

With a Record of Decision expected in the summer of 2014, is the talk more of the military attempting to quell criticism from local officials for DOD's lack of initiative to move the Guam Buildup from a dead stop in 2011?  While we can credit the Guam Legislature with some of the wrangling that has more than turned off federal officials planning the move, DOD's silence has been deafening.  

Over speculating construction companies have since left the island, with the remaining corporations clinging to the hope of getting a piece of some federal spend in the coming months.  In fact, some of the off-island groups are pulling projects away from entrenched local contractors. 

Words are not helping this situation.  Action is needed.  A solution to the policy and financial gridlock needs to be shared with the community and acted upon as swiftly as possible.

Influence peddling related to this important issue to Micronesia has been haphazard over the last two years.  Opportunities have been lost.  Chalk it up to bad advice from those who claim to be in the "know".  What we do know is that we better start adapting to our "new normal" and find ways to pull the economy up from the ground.  

I find it curious that leaders are saying today that the Guam economy is stable.  Tourism is at an all time high.  Federal spend is at the lowest levels in years.

Also, the jobless rate in the Territory isn't faring well.  Housing starts are at its lowest in years.  Car sales are brisk.  Consumer confidence is low.  Government spending is upside down-no thanks to federal court actions.  Stability?  There are other terms to describe the Guam economy.  You be the judge of that.

I do believe that there is something positive to be taken from all of this.  We must adjust to living in a new Paradise Guam.  Families should take time to think about how to care for themselves.  Creative options must be sought to streamline our island's core businesses of government spending and tourism.  Many should not take this latest dip in our island's economy sitting down.  Rather, we must embrace it and look for ways to support our collective livelihoods. 

The way forward must be diversification.  We can create great prosperity in those industries that are relevant to supporting our regional growth today.  It will put more jobs in the hands of our people so outside investors can once again be excited about what the Guam Buildup will bring to our island and the Western Pacific.  

These are doable things.  

Leaders need to come together to implement lasting policy changes and modernize Guam's laws.  Investment into Guam must not just be about dollars and sense, but common sense planning for the future.  

The winds of change must be embraced by each and every resident.  

A new season is coming.  We must be prepared for what the Guam Buildup will bring-both good and bad. 

Hardwood – A "Primer" from our friends at Savoy

The team at Savoy Furniture are some of the best in the business.  Like GET, LLC, they too are a women owned business.  They too strive to provide the best service to all of their customers.  Savoy has committed 2013 to nurturing and improving their relationships with their teaming partners.  Jason Seyler and the Government Sales and Marketing Team work overtime to ensure there quality product makes it to the jobsite and the end result is a satisfied customer.  This tidbit of information on hardwood furniture is right from our friends five time zones and 7800 miles away in Montoursville, Pennsylvania with a simple explanation on their commitment to quality.
"...When it comes to furniture construction, it’s hard to be an expert on a topic with so many differing opinions.  Here at Savoy, we like to keep things simple.  Different materials are best for different applications.  Solid hardwood has its place – bed posts for example.  Its biggest problem… it splits.  Typically, this will occur along the wood’s natural growth rings and is difficult to prevent.
That is why we, at Savoy, have chosen to use a significantly stronger material for much of our furniture construction.  Plywood is simply a number of thin layers of wood that is bonded to create very strong, stable sheets.  The fact is, plywood holds up seven times better in humidity and is not susceptible to the cracking that hardwood is.  It also provides more consistent color and grain pattern. The end result is stronger, more durable products that provides the warmth of wood, without the problems of solid hardwood."
For more on how Savoy Furniture and GET, LLC can assist you with your furniture needs, please check out our website and drop us a line or give us a call.

AMERICAN MADE!!!-Independence LED Lighting

On October 5, 2012, GET, LLC dba GET Equipment  became an authorized distributor of Independence LED Lighting to provide LED Lighting Products for retrofits and or new construction projects and any and all products of Independence LED.  The Boyertown, Pennsylvania team is the best in the industry-and right now, one of the busiest.

The company has seen a tremendous lift in demand resulting in revenues tripling over each of the past two years. Independence LED Lighting's clients range from industrial Distribution Centers to Fortune 100 Companies and from independent businesses to National Chains.

Over the course of 2011 Lockheed Martin’s engineering team conducted the reviews and approved the Independence LED tube system over others for the coveted Con Edison Rebates in the NYC Metro Market.

The Independence LED “External Driver” system has set a new standard, and it also earned the Underwriters Laboratories (UL) and the Compliance European (CE) Listings on the complete driver and tube retrofit kit system.

Their Deep Fin thermal management and Flex Density™ system provide cost-effective U.S. manufacturing with scale and reliability. For property owners and managers, the LED tubes cut the cost of electricity by 50% or more over fluorescent tubes.

For more information on the Independence LED Lighting solutions please feel free to contact us or check out the spec sheets on our website at

Good Advice from the C-Suite at the Virgin Group

In a blog post billionaire CEO Richard Branson was giving some advice on how to run a successful business. 

I had the privilege to meet Mr. Branson four years ago while attending the Western States Inaugural Ball in Washington DC for President Barack Obama.  He was very humble.  Many around him that night were in awe of him.  It was a neat experience and his words of advice hit right at your heart. Case in point with the GET, LLC blog:  

Something he said which  really stood out was that in our technology age people tend to close LESS business. He said that he still believes face to face communication and picking up the telephone are the best ways to get business deals done.

If you're struggling to close prospects or your team isn't duplicating the way you'd like, it's time
to pick up the phone and actually TALK with people. As a leader, you have to help others and show them what to do.

Also, try to make it a point to get to live meetings - this is where you can meet other people in the business.

Make a commitment to do these simple actions and be present in your business. 

Guam SAME hosting 2012 IBC Fundamental Provisions Workshop for Engineers, Architects and Builders

Something to put on your calendar.  Next month, the Guam Post of the Society of American Military Engineers (SAME) will be hosting a one-day workshop entitled "2012 IBC FUNDAMENTAL STRUCTURAL PROVISIONS FOR ENGINEERS, ARCHITECHS AND BUILDERS".  The event is slated for February 20, 2013 at the Hyatt Regency Guam. This workshop is designed to help the Guam Engineering, Architecture and Construction industry with the transition to the 2012 International Building Code (IBC) to be implemented on Guam within the next 12 months.

It took much work and lobbying by local contractors, but Guam recently moved from the 1994 edition of the Uniform Building Code (UBC) to the 2009 edition of the IBC as the basis of the Building Code of Guam. For the users of the Building Code of Guam, this involves a steep transition, because the following model code editions were skipped: the 1997 UBC, the 2000 IBC, the 2003 IBC, and the 2006 IBC.

The focus for the event will be on designs for the two natural hazards common to Guam-wind and earthquakes.   When you live in a place where you have four named storms a year and sit along "The Ring of Fire", it makes so much sense to understand more about the changes.  Additionally, the impacts on the IBC changes on steel and concrete structures (both cast-in-place and pre-cast) will be discussed in detail.

This course, along with efforts by the Guam Legislature to adopt the Guam Tropical Energy Code are great first steps in modernizing construction techniques and standards on Guam.  The GTEC should be passed in the first quarter of this year -GET, LLC will be able to assist with the LED Lighting upgrades and recommendations on sustainable insulation solutions for steel and concrete buildings.

While there are many who would say that such alterations will bring up the cost of construction on Guam, the changes are necessary for our island to be in compliance with the code and prepare ourselves for the buildup related to the move of the III Marine Expeditionary Force to Guam in the years to come-an effort that would require such requirements.  We can't expect changes such as these to come only because we are going to see large amounts of federal monies into an aging infrastructure, but because t is the right thing for us to do as a modern American community building facilities for the future of the next generation of Guamanians.

Guam-A Different Perspective

An interesting drama played out in Washington DC this past weekend as U.S. Department of the Interior Assistant Secretary Anthony M. "Tony" Babauta resigned from his post.

With the departure of Interior Secretary Ken Salazar expected in March and a second term for President  Barack Obama in full swing, the issues surrounding the DOI Inspector General's investigation into alleged actions by the former-Hill aide and Guam Legislative staffer have yet to be fully revealed.  

Washington insiders have revealed a number of different issues that may have led to Tony leaving Interior.  It is likely he will end up on K Street lobbying on any number of the issues he spent the last ten years working on up on Capitol Hill.  The Gonzaga graduate could help influence policy on renewable energy, trade, or insular area matters. One thing is for certain, his background and federal policy experience will be of great benefit to his next employer.  

So why resign?  

The Agat, Guam native ascended like a rocket to one of the highest posts ever held by a Chamorro in an executive branch agency.  In fact, some wondered how he was able to nab such an important job early in the current Administration as Senior Advisor to Secretary Salazar then Assistant Secretary without giving a single penny to the Obama Campaign or stumped for Obama during the 2008 election cycle.  Maybe it was his policy work with U.S. Virgin Islands Delegate Donna Christiansen, his professional staff experience with Guam Delegate Madeleine Bordallo or his often talked about-but quiet-role working on the staff of former Guam Delegate Robert Underwood. 

Regardless, many a Chamorro was proud of Tony.  Such an accomplishment is remarkable with all things considered and perhaps the career path will inspire other young men and women of Guam to do the same.  

Washington DC is a nasty town.  Though the seat of one of the greatest government's in the world, DC is a place where those with influence and a shred of credibility among the political elite play for keeps.  

Tony was a decision maker.  Not many people have respect for such authority.  Many others may have even less respect for a guy who may or may not have been going at the direction of the agency foremost on the radar of insular area people and others looking to profit in America's last Pacific and Caribbean frontiers.  Tony's actions probably aren't matching up with this President's agenda from now and into the Inaugural activities in 2017. 

On this side of the dateline, this may not bode well for the Democratic Party of Guam who were banking on a marketable and young policy wonk to perhaps get the nod to go against the incumbent Governor of Guam and retake Adelup for the first time since 2002. I don't think this will be the last time we will hear of this issue. 

There is an old saying that, "It seldom happens that a premature shoot of genius arrives at maturity."  Tony was the face of a sitting U.S. President.  His shingle says so.  It was the face that may have been hiding something that only in time will be revealed and hopefully any pain or heartache is mitigated for the sake of the other actors. 

Genie Safety Notice 120016-Z80

The timing of this Genie Safety Notice came at an interesting time for us.  On the day that our Genie Trailer-Mounted TZ-50 came into the Port of Guam after a long journey direct from the factory in North Carolina, the Guam Contractors Association (GCA) sent this message out to all of its members regarding the Genie Z-80 Articulating Boom Lift.  

We applaud the GCA for being an advocate for safety in the construction industry.  It was the first Safety Notice we had received since becoming an Associate Member.  For small businesses, it is commendable that such guidance is given from responsible trade associations like the GCA. Our hats off to James Martinez and the team at the GCA.

Not soon after the notice was issued, our friends from Terex/Genie were on island to commission our trailer mounted boom lift. We discussed in detail the Safety Notice and the policies from Terex/Genie that guide such actions.  

For the manufacturer, they believe that such notices not only bring attention to operational issues with their machines, but also to reassure the end users that safety notices are as important a part of the services Terex/Genie provides like their extensive equipment training and worldwide parts support.

This brings up a great point about the use of articulating boom lifts like the one in the safety notice and the one GET, LLC recently purchased: they can be of great benefit on the job site.  They can help a contractor reach places the traditional ladder cant or transport project materials.  Also the lift helps electrical and utility workers gain access to places they need to when scaffolding is cost and time prohibitive.  
But articulating lifts can be dangerous.  All operators need to take proper precautions when using them. 

There is nothing more important that ensuring that these types of lifts are operated safely.

Guam-A Different Perspective

I write this as the Nation celebrates a tradition that started with George Washington in 1776.  This time, I am in the comfort of my home where the two previous presidential inaugurations I braved the snow, the long lines at the Metro Stations and the sheer anticipation of seeing the President walk down the stairs of the Capitol to be sworn in-a sign that our democracy has and continues to work.

 I remember the pride of seeing my Governor enter the ceremony with the rest of his colleagues and the glimpse of my congresswoman making her way down the steps to her seat.  I watched today as a college contemporary led the new Congress into the ceremony as the Majority Whip. I swelled with pride knowing my Congresswoman was again part of this time honored ceremony repeated every four years since 1973-it was her fifth inauguration event.

 It is a ceremony that reminds us that we are part of the American family.  It is a ceremony that reminds us we have a responsibility to share such pride in our President, even though we here in America's Western most territory don't even vote for him or don't agree with his polices and politics.  It is a ceremony that brings us closer to Washington DC, though we are five time zones away.  Most of our island was asleep as the latest transition of power is completed. 

The presidential inauguration is a time to reaffirm our commitment to our roles as part of the American society.  Whether standing on the lawn of the National Mall or sitting in front of the TV in Southern Guam, this glimpse into the transition of government should remind of us of how special it is to be American.
"Faith in America's Future" was the theme of the 57th inauguration.  Many local policy makers are taking up the challenge laid out by President Barack Obama in his inaugural address. Most Senators have remarked that they should reach across party lines and do what is best for the people of Guam in the creation of public policy.  While their respective terms are just underway, it remains to be seen if this will be a true and lasting change to Guam politics.  And even if this attitude is embraced, will new jobs be created, will our kids gain more from their educational experience and will our island streets be safer?  When the first Legislative session of the 32nd Guam Legislature begins in the coming weeks lets all hope the posturing results in positive public policy that benefits us all. 

The Administration is also going to be expected to embrace this new political normal in Guam.  Governor Eddie Calvo will be presenting his third State of the Island Address very soon.  His first term agenda still has yet to be completed.  Tax refunds, merit bonuses and the delivery of critical public services have driven his decision making since being sworn in January 2011.  The people will be listening to his speech with much interest and with his plan to move the island forward over the course of the new year-and with the buy in and legislative assistance of the Guam Legislature.  Don't forget the Judiciary with all this as they too will be looking at the other two branches to ensure that they can achieve their aggressive goals this year and retain the checks and balances of the three branches.

Celebrating democracy is such a fantastic thing.  I am using this blog post to celebrate one of the most important part of our democracy-the United States Constitution and specifically the first amendment .  I am proud to be an American and proud to be part of this great melting pot-Paradise Guam.

Bunk Beds-Savoy Furniture's SMART BED: A Safer Sleep Experience Coming To A Dorm Near You

Growing up, our family has always had a bunk bed in our house.  Mom figured with two of us, the bunk bed solution was practical.  My Mom and mothers since the times of ancient Egypt all had the same reasoning for choosing to use the bunk bed. Bunk beds are good on space.  They sleep two.  It kept my brother and I separate-more or less from pounding on each other as growing boys have been doing to each other each night for hundreds of years.  And the bunk bed is comfortable.  Really comfortable.

The bunk bed continues to evolve in terms of design and today is made from a variety of materials.  While many a parent today rely on the bunk bed to take care of their children's  sleeping needs, ensuring the safety on those beds is becoming ever so important both at home and away.

For the better part of 13 years, the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) has worked diligently to address safety concerns after receiving reports of deaths of children who died when they were trapped between the upper bunk of a bunk bed and the wall or when they were trapped in openings in the bed's structure.  Safety upgrades like the use of guardrails have done much to reduce the risk of harm to kids and young adults sleeping on bunk beds and does not adversely affect the performance and availability of the long term standard in homes and dorm rooms across the world.   Let's not forget storage and mitigating risk for some young adults who will rely on them for the newest chapter in their lives-many away from their home for the first time.

Now as a father with young children, I have a bunk bed in my house and want to make sure that they all are having a safe and sound nights' sleep.  Also, with kids headed to college in the coming years, the bunk bed standard will be just as important for them in that transition away from home.

With that said, this week Savoy Furniture has reached out to 3,500 colleges, universities and design firms introducing them to a great new product-the SMART Bed.  

The innovative SMART Bed features increased storage with a modular, anti-bed bug and tool-less design.  These features are missing in other bunk bed products on the market today.  Contact GET, LLC for more information on the SMART Bed.

I think this new product will be a great addition to any institution of higher learning that relies on the modern bunk bed for the sleeping needs of their student. 

While the CPSC has excluded regulation on the bunk bed in institutions of higher learning, there is a chance this may change soon. 

With the Savoy SMART Bed, you can expect to be ahead of the regulatory changes and allowing your end user-the student- to better adapt to the challenges of college life while still enjoying the comforts of home.

Demand For U.S. Made LED Tube Lights Increases for International Sales

Hafa Adai! A great article posted back on October 7, 2012 that explores three factors driving international demand for Light-Emitting Diode (LED) Lighting:

The article features quotes from Independence LED Lighting Chairman and CEO Charlie Szoradi. 

Charlie is the quintessential professional.  GET, LLC has spent numerous opportunities with him via phone, late at night Guam time, and he has really inspired us to think more about the opportunities to assist building owners in ways never really discussed here and across the region.  The discussions have led to talks on other business opportunities in the Western Pacific.  
I leave you with this:

"...As global population continues to increase there is no end in sight for the increasing demand on energy."

By reducing energy through sustainable means, will ensure our communities thrive now and into the future.

Welcome to the GET LLC Blog

Hafa Adai!  We at GET, LLC are very excited about this new chapter in the history of our consulting and construction materials and equipment business.  With the launch of our newly designed website at, we have now added a You Tube Channel, a GET, LLC Picassa Web Album Site, a link to our presence and this Blog. 

We would like to thank Guam WEBZ for their help with this project and we are certain that moving forward you will gain some great information and insight on not only our lines of business, but of our island, region and world around us. 

A great leader of Micronesia once said, "...the oceans do not separate us, they bring us closer together." 

That is what GET, LLC will accomplish with and the improvement of our web presence-the world wide web and the related technologies is our modern day "ocean" of information.
Over the days, weeks and months ahead, our goal is to be able to provide some great content for you to get to know a little about us and how we can assist your respective individual and business needs.

On behalf of Tricia and Shawn, we are certain that what you will read and see here at will be of great use to you.