Local News

Court Report


Despite recommendations by both defense and the government to place Feliua’i Liu on probation, Chief Justice Michael Kruse did not accept it and sentenced the defendant to seven years in jail, pointing out the court is concerned about the victim in this matter, who’s only 16 years old. Liu is charged in connection with a sexually related case involving a girl from his church.

LBJ hospital sets aside funds to establish non-profit foundation


In an effort to secure financial resources from an off island non-profit organization, the LBJ Medical Center has set aside funding in the new fiscal year 2015 to work on getting its own not-for-profit exemption from the federal government in order to establish a hospital charitable foundation.
In its FY 2015 budget, the hospital has allocated $75,000 for a “501c filing for LBJ non-profit status, and to hire off island contractors to conduct training for professional development of staff” according to the budget document.

StarKist, Eni meet to discuss economic incentives for canneries


Federal government issues — including federal tax credits — were discussed last week during a meeting between Congressman Faleomavaega Eni and StartKist Co., president and chief executive Sam Hwi Lee, who requested the meeting regarding the company’s operations in American Samoa.
Meanwhile, the Lolo Administration is awaiting the final report on the economic development plan which outlines tax incentive recommendations meant to stimulate the economy, and  thereby provide more jobs.

Community Briefs


Governor Lolo Matalasi Moliga cut the ribbon during a special ceremony last Thursday, officially signifying the opening of the new water line that connects the residents of the farthest west side villages to the American Samoa Power Authority (ASPA) system.

Delegation attends Coral Reef Task Force


Scientists and experts from across the United States met in Kaanapali, Maui to discuss key national issues and proposed new actions, as well as present progress reports in their efforts to protect the coral reef ecosystem.
The 32nd US Coral Reef Task Force (USCRTF) meeting took place Sept. 2-7 and was co-hosted by the Dept. of Commerce, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the Dept. of Interior.

Community unhappy with hike in Gov's pay and Fono office allowances


A move by the Fono to increase the annual salaries of the governor and lieutenant governor as well as hiking the office allowance for lawmakers has been called "inappropriate" by Leone High School principal, Ben Te’o, who also voiced concerns with the pay hikes for cabinet directors included in the fiscal year 2015 budget.

WestPac: Why Monument expansion is a bad idea

For one: it will increase illegal and unregulated fishing and seafood fraud

While they applaud President Barack Obama’s new move to combat Illegal, Unreported, and Unregulated (IUU) fishing and seafood fraud, the Western Pacific Regional Fishery Management Council (Council) contends that Obama’s proposal to expand the Pacific Remote Islands Marine National Monument (PRIMNM) for conservation will in fact increase IUU and seafood fraud in the PRIMNM area.

Names of Top 6 acts for AS Best Dance Crew revealed

Two more shows until the finale

Rock Solid 2 from Afao stole the show this past Thursday during the second round of the semi-finals for the American Samoa’s Best Dance Crew (ASBDC) competition, which will continue next Thursday, Sept. 18 with the “Top 6 Dance Off”.
 The eight-week program will culminate on Thursday, Sept. 25 with the grand finale: “The Top 4 Dance Off”.

Kruse hands down 7-year sentence in sexual assault case


Chief Justice Michael Kruse has questioned the Attorney General’s office, asking if there are immigration laws banning minors from Samoa from entering the territory without their parents.
The question was posed after another sexual case involving a girl from Samoa landed before the High Court for sentencing. In the interest of protecting the victim’s identity in this matter Samoa News is withholding the name of the defendant.

American Samoa to host travel event in New Zealand


American Samoa Visitors Bureau is hopeful that a travel trade event set for Sept. 29 in Auckland, showcasing the territory as a destination will attract more visitors and interest from New Zealand, according to the Visitors Bureau eNewsletter.

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