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FBI defers Duke Viena case to local authorities

fili@samoanews.com

The Federal Bureau of Investigation Honolulu office has deferred investigation in the case of Duke Ueli Viena to American Samoa authorities, who have already filed a misdemeanor charge of public peace disturbance against the defendant.
 
The single charge against Viena stems from an incident which occurred onboard last Friday night’s Hawaiian Airlines flight from Honolulu to Pago Pago. The defendant was allegedly already intoxicated when he boarded the flight in Honolulu.
 



Gov asks to be in federal amnesty college loan program — for health care profession

fili@samoanews.com

To entice medical and technical personnel to work in American Samoa, the Lolo Administration has asked the U.S. Department of Interior to advocate for including American Samoa in a federal program which would forgive college student loans in the health care profession.
 



U.S. Senate passes measure which includes tax break for canneries

fili@samoanews.com

In a vote of 76-16, the U.S. Senate passed Tuesday night in Washington D.C.  a  U.S. House measure which includes out-going Congressman Faleomavaega Eni’s provision for a one-year extension of the federal 30A tax credit benefits for American Samoa.
 
The measure, which Faleomavega says provides federal benefits critical to American Samoa’s tuna canneries and economy, now goes to the White House for President Barack Obama’s signature.
 



Am. Samoa to receive $750K to design models to improve health care

joy@samoanews.com

American Samoa will receive up to $750,000 to design health care payment and service delivery models that will improve health care quality and lower costs, says Patrick Conway, Deputy Administrator for Innovation and Quality and CMS Chief Medical Officer, in a letter to Governor Lolo Matalasi Moliga yesterday.
 
Conway thanked Governor Lolo for applying for an award under the second round of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services State Innovation Models (SIM) Initiative.
 



Community Briefs

reporters@samoanews.com

NOTICE FOR PEOPLE WITH OPEN CASE FILES AT FALEOMAVAEGA'S OFFICE
 
The Delegate-elect's office has been unsuccessful in efforts to have open constituent case files transferred over.
 
Please contact Delegate Faleomavaega Eni’s office to get any files related to your unresolved issue or issues with the Federal Government and bring or forward them to the new Delegate's office at Fagatogo Square after January 3, 2015. Fa'afetai.
 



LBJ approves off island referral for Baby Mel

blue@samoanews.com

The Soli family from Nuuuli received wonderful news yesterday, when they were informed that the LBJ Medical Center had approved Baby Mel’s case for off island referral.
 
Baby Melchizedek (Mel) has been fighting for his life at the LBJ Hospital since December 1.
 
According to his family, the off island referral will mean that LBJ Hospital “will offer some assistance and we are grateful.”



Court denies Marie Ripley’s motion to dismiss case

Says Ripley contributed to delay of case with constant travel
joy@samoanews.com

“Throughout 2012, 2013 and 2014, the defendant took advantage of ASG and the court’s leniency and by filing this motion she now seems to be looking the proverbial gift horse in the mouth,” says the court order in denying former OMV Manager, Marie Ripley the move to dismiss the Independent Prosecutor’s case against her. 
 
The 12-page order was signed by Associate Justice Lyle L Richmond and Associate Judges Mamea Sala Jr and Muasau Tofili.
 



Gov. Lolo responds to FAA audit of airport land

Says land inside airport fence is for airport use, outside is for ASG use
fili@samoanews.com

The U.S. Federal Aviation Administration has completed its audit on all of the airport property and its usage, in relationship to federal grant applications by the Port Administration, but Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga says that any land inside the Pago Pago International Airport is committed for airport use, while land outside of the airport fence is for government use.
 



Court Report

joy@samoanews.com

AG MAY FILE ADDITIONAL CHARGES AGAINST DUKE VIENA
 
The Attorney General’s office is looking at filing additional criminal charges against Duke Viena whose actions almost caused Hawaiian Air to turn around and return to Honolulu last Friday night. Viena is accused of threatening flight attendants while on board the flight.
 



An Interview with Johnny Victor Toma

1st Samoan to obtain a Corp. International Master’s (CIM) degree
reporters@samoanews.com

On Monday this week Samoa News reported on three extraordinary individuals who have made great strides in their fields — Marcus Mariota, the first Samoan to win the Heisman trophy;  Dr. Poe Mageo, an accomplished Samoan musician, who is now a published author in a prestigious Commonwealth literary journal; and Johnny Victor Tomas, who is the first Samoan to earn a Corporate International Master’s degree, which includes diplomas from three of the world’s leading business schools:
 



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