ASAN, Guam –
Under a green canopy of forest at Northwest Field on Andersen Air Force Base (AFB), members of Guam’s community collected moss, or lumot in CHamoru, just in time for the holiday season to accompany their nativity scenes.
The visit was part of the Public Access Plan outlined in the 2011 Programmatic Agreement Regarding the Military Relocation to the Islands of Guam and Tinian, and was facilitated by Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command (NAVFAC) Marianas.
“As a signatory of the programmatic agreement, the Navy is required to provide access to identified cultural and historic sites on Joint Region Marianas installations,” said Frank Alig, NAVFAC Marianas natural resources specialist and Public Access Plan coordinator. “The public access plan affords the community the opportunity to visit these sites for different purposes including collecting plants and seeds, visiting areas that were not accessible to the public in the past, and paying respect to our ancestors who lived on the land.”
Currently, there are more than 20 sites listed in the plan on Andersen AFB, U.S. Naval Base Guam (NBG), NBG Munitions Annex, Marine Corps Base Camp Blaz, and the Tinian Military Leased Area in the Commonwealth of the Mariana Islands.
“I think it’s a good program for the military to have to build and maintain a positive relationship with the local community,” said Tatiana Talavera from the village of Ordot-Chalan Pago. “The public access plan is the military giving back to us.”
For more information about the program, contact Frank Alig, Public Access Plan coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org, or 671-339-5621. Though requests are accepted, the base commander will make the final decision for access based on operational requirements and safety, and compliance with applicable Department of Defense policies, laws and regulations.