Local News

Fed court delays Anetipa’s tax fraud sentencing


Due to a court scheduling conflict the federal court in Anchorage, Alaska has postponed until the middle of next month sentencing for American Samoa tax fraudster Pepe Anetipa, who has already pled guilty to a 28-count indictment handed down last year for making false, fictitious, and fraudulent claims against the federal government.

ASCC Library collaborates on Sociolinguistic Project

Two of the Core Values held by the American Samoa Community College (ASCC) are Respect for Diversity — which includes an appreciation of global perspectives and viewpoints, and Collaboration and Teamwork — which involves creating a sound environment for networking opportunities through effective communication, partnerships, and growth.

Termination or resignation — it is up in the air for DoH employees


Department of Health Director Motusa Tuileama Nua said he has yet to make a decision as to whether or not he will accept the resignations of two of the three DoH managers — Susan Valoaga and Jacinta Tialavea — who submitted resignation letters, after the director moved to terminate their employment with the DoH. Last month the Health Director moved to terminate three managers, which includes Aileen Solaita. Valoaga and Tialavea however, in return, submitted their resignations.

“Ua tau’ai misa matou” Va’anatiu reveals at Fono hearing


A heated debated arose during last week’s meeting of the ASG Employees Retirement Fund board of trustees, when chairman Va’anatiu Tofala Iafeta asked two board members, who are also cabinet directors, to “voluntarily” recuse themselves, but the pair refused, arguing they did nothing wrong.

ASCC Fine Arts Dep’t. events to focus on film, jazz

The American Samoa Community College (ASCC) Fine Arts Department is sponsoring a series of upcoming events to celebrate the creative mediums of filmmaking and Jazz. First, ASCC will be the venue for “Deep Waters – A Pacific Film Showcase” on Tuesday, October 13th and Thursday, October 15th. The following week, October 19-23rd, the College will hold daily Jazz-themed events as part of its Jazz Festival Week 2015, organized to coincide with this year’s Samoana Jazz & Arts Festival.

Update: Minimum wage compromise signed into law


The governor’s executive assistant Iulogologo Joseph Pereira says the American Samoa Government is looking at an estimated cost of more than $5 million to comply with the new minimum wage increase of 40 cents per hour, under federal legislation signed into law on Wednesday this week.
And with the new minimum hike, Chamber of Commerce chairman David Robinson revealed that some local companies have hiked wages above the new minimum for certain workers — particularly those with special skills.

Mother asks why assault “swept under the rug”


Commissioner of Public Safety, Save Liuato Tuitele has dismissed allegations that he played a role in an alleged criminal case, which accuses his relative of a sex crime and said, “I was not involved in the closing of the case.”
He was responding to Samoa News queries after a woman reached out to Samoa News noting that their male neighbor allegedly abused her seven-year-old daughter and the police had closed the case noting there’s no evidence.  The mother provided Samoa News with the police report dated March 24, 2015.

Obama signs amended wage hike legislation


President Barack Obama yesterday signed into law federal legislation, which gives workers in American Samoa a 40 cent per hour minimum wage hike.
Federal law mandated that the next 50 cent wage increase was to go into effect on Sept. 30, 2015, but the federal legislation reduces the wage hike down to 40 cents per hour for all 18 different industries in the territory.

DPS recommends filing criminal charges against former DOC project manager


The Department of Public Safety is recommending that criminal charges be filed against former Department of Agriculture grant writer Michael McDonald.
This is in connection with $9,494 in federal grant funds that was supposed to go to the DOA but instead, ended up in his business account.

Greenpeace launches global campaign against Thai Union Group canned tuna products

Thai Union owns US based Chicken of the Sea

Environmentalist group Greenpeace International has launched a global campaign urging consumers and investors to avoid canned tuna products by Thai Union Group, which owns US based Chicken of the Sea, a major competitor to StarKist Co., which operates StarKist Samoa cannery in American Samoa.

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