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Archive - Jan 3, 2012

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No major incidents, no deaths, no New Year baby

fili@samoanews.com

While American Samoa did not have a New Year’s baby to celebrate the start of 2012, the Department of Public Safety was happy to report there was no major incident in the territory claiming any lives during the New Year’s holiday weekend



News Roundup 2011 — good, bad & hot topics

reporters@samoanews.com

American Samoa in the year 2011 was faced with an economic downturn as the cost of living went up, while the government projected a $7 million shortfall at the start of the year. It was also a year full of excitement, changes and overall many news reports despite being a small island.

In 2011, the federal government continued to probe into a wide range of issues with federal charges filed in federal court.



Judge orders more jail time for drug defendant

Family in tears over decision
fili@samoanews.com

As the High Court handed down last Thursday a 20-month jail term for drug defendant Poufa Silulu, the defendant’s mother sobbed while Silulu’s very young son used his white t-shirt to slowly wipe away his own tears, in an already empty court room that was earlier packed with relatives of other defendants sentenced that day.



New gas prices— up by 7¢ on New Year’s Day

The good news: all other petroleum products went down
fili@samoanews.com

The New Year rang in with a hike in gasoline prices for the territory, while all other prices for petroleum products sold in American Samoa decreased. The new maximum allowable price (MAP) or wholesale price, went into effect on Jan. 1, 2012.

Petroleum Officer Sione Kava with the ASG Office of Petroleum Management (OPM) said the new MAP for gasoline now stands at $3.65 per gallon, a seven-cent increase, which means retail prices at the gas stations will hike past the $4 mark.



Last big catch landed on New Year’s Eve

A look at the last biggest catch of 2011, as these two huge Blue Marlins were tackled in by Teioutaifeau Mitchell Shimasaki of Faga’alu (far left), along with his crew, who ventured out to fish on New Year’s Eve, and came back with two 400 plus pound Marlin, a spectacular way to ring in the New Year.

Shimasaki is pictured here with his crew members Raymo, Jake, and Mike at the Marina in Malaloa, as they brought their catch to be weighed in, before taking it home for a New Year’s feast.



US soldier: He didn't see explosives while packing

MIDLAND, Texas (AP) -- A soldier accused of having explosives in his carry-on luggage when he entered a Texas airport told investigators he used them in Afghanistan but didn't realize any were still in his bags, according to court documents.



RESIDENTS OF POLOA ENJOY THE VIEW — AND THEIR NEW HONOR ON THE GLOBAL MAP

fili@samoanews.com

Residents of the shoreline village of Poloa on the far western tip of Tutuila are proud, thrilled and happy to be given the new designation as the last place on earth to see the last sunset of the year after Samoa leapt to the other side of the International Dateline.

“It’s amazing. It’s an honor. For us residents of Poloa it is a real honor be getting the designation as the last place to see the sun set,” said Ms. A. Taifane as she pointed to the sun that was setting, creating a breathtaking orange-red glow over the horizon.



EMS sent back to LBJ Medical Center by executive order

fili@samoanews.com

The Emergency Medical Service has been transferred back to the LBJ Medical Center effective Jan. 1, 2012, in accordance with a Dec. 29, 2011 executive order signed by Gov. Togiola Tulafono, who had transferred EMS to the Department of Public Safety more than two years ago, also by executive order.



DMWR finalizes plans for Marine Debris clean up day

jeff@samoanews.com

The Department of Marine Wildlife Resources (DMWR) will be having a ‘Marine Debris Cleanup Day’ at Utulei Beach Park on Friday January 13. according to the DMWR Marine Project Manager, Alice Lawrence.



Loeak elected new Marshall Islands President

The Marshall Islands parliament has chosen the opposition’s Christopher Loeak as the new president following last November’s general election.

Mr Loeak was elected by 21 votes to 11, defeating the incumbent Jurelang Zedkaia.

The new president is a traditional chief, continuing the trend of traditional leaders holding the top political office.

Mr Loeak has been a cabinet member in previous governments and has served in parliament for 25 years.