Senators have passed Bill 53-35, which bans scuba spear fishing. The bill will now be sent to the governor’s office for her action.
With a vote of 13 votes "yes" and 2 votes "no", even if the governor vetoes the bill, the legislature could potentially override the veto. The Legislature needs 10 votes to override a veto, which would then mean the bill becomes law.
Prior to the vote, groups of fishermen - one against the bill and the other in favor of it - were rallying outside the Congress Building and inside the lobby, respectively.
Fisherman’s Coop President Manny Duenas led the group urging senators to vote against the bill. His fishermen brought trailers with boats that had signs hanging off the sides. One sign read “Recall Sen. Sabina Perez!” Another sign had: “Ban sen. Travel, not fishing!”
The second group, which included long-time fisherman Ronald Laguaña urged senators to pass the bill. They too had signs, one read: “Bota Hunggan Para 53-35.” Another sign read “Thanks but no tanks.”
How they voted
Here’s the list of how the senators voted when the clerk called each of their names. Senators can either vote “yes” or “no”. Or they can “pass” up to three times, though the third “pass” becomes a “no” vote.
• Sen. Wil Castro - Yes
• Sen. Regine Biscoe Lee - Yes
• Sen. Kelly Marsh - Yes
• Sen. James Moylan - No
• Sen. Louise Muna - Pass, Pass, Pass (This becomes a no vote)
• Speaker Tina Muna Barnes - Yes
• Vice Speaker Telena Nelson - Yes
• Sen. Sabina Perez - Yes
• Sen. Clinton Ridgell - Yes
• Sen. Joe San Agustin - Pass, Yes
• Sen. Amanda Shelton - Yes
• Sen. Telo Taitague - Pass, Pass, Yes
• Sen. Jose Pedo Terlaje - Yes
• Sen. Therese Terlaje - Pass, Yes
• Sen. Mary Torres - Pass, Yes