Local News

Parents stay strong, hopeful for daughter with cancer


Despite what the doctors told Fiapa’ipa’i and Elsie Ta’aau in February — that their eldest daughter is looking at only six months to live — they have faith and are not giving up hope. They intend to fight for their daughter, who has been diagnosed with Osteosarcoma, a bone cancer, which is the most common type of bone cancer, and accounts for about 3% of cancers that occur in children.

DOH employees take exception to language in their director’s email

Lodge complaint with DOL

Department of Health employees are seeking assistance from the Department of Labor following receipt of an email containing what they say is foul language sent by the DOH Director Motusa Tuileama Sao, who is currently off island on medical leave.
Motusa acknowledges the tone of his message in the email, apologizing but points to his frustration with the decision making process of his employees.

Community Briefs


The new 5% hotel occupancy, or room tax, which includes motels and other similar places of establishment goes into effect this week, Wednesday, July 1.
The administration bill which set up the new tax was approved by the Fono in the First Regular Session and signed into law by the governor on Apr. 16. ASG officials testified in the Fono that the government estimates they will be able to collect $200,000 from the new tax.

UPDATE: Langford sentenced to nearly two years

Plus restitution of $260K “due immediately” to ASG

Former ASG Human Resources Department director Evelyn Langford will self surrender at a designated federal prison in September after being sentenced to serve close to two years, last Friday at the federal court in Oakland, California.
Meanwhile, the Federal Bureau of Investigation has promised it will not hesitate to probe allegations of federal crimes in American Samoa.

CoC head “doubtful” min wage subsidy would be extended to private sector


The territory’s Chamber of Commerce is doubtful that the U.S. government will include the local private sector in any federal subsidy to help pay for the federally mandated minimum wage increase in the territory, says Chamber chairman David Robinson, who is also chairman of the ASG Shipyard Services Authority, which oversees and manages the government owned Satala shipyard.

2015 ELDP graduates 22 Pacific participants

On June 12, 2015, at the East-West Center in Honolulu, Hawaii, 22 Pacific participants from throughout the U.S. Affiliated insular areas graduated from the Executive Leadership Development Program (ELDP).  ELDP Class of 2015 is the fourth graduating class since the program’s inception in 2008.

American Airlines makes no comment on Purcell lawsuit

Claims commitment to safe, pleasant travel experience

American Airlines says it’s committed to providing a safe and pleasant travel experience for all of its customers, but would not comment on the specifics of a lawsuit filed against the Texas-based airline by an American Samoa woman, because the case is in litigation.

Aumua supports self-determination for Puerto Rico

(Source: Media release Aumua Amata's office)

The House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Indian, Insular & Alaska Native Affairs conducted a hearing in Washington last week entitled, Examining Procedures Regarding Puerto Rico’s Political Status and Economic Outlook.
The purpose of this oversight hearing was to discuss the relationship between the current economic crisis gripping the island and the unresolved issue of political status. The discussion featured two separate panels consisting of former Governors and other high-ranking Puerto Rican Officials, both past and present.

Local sports federations need to change mindset: ASNOC


Concerns about last minute fundraising to send local athletes to the XV Pacific Games was the subject of discussion at last week’s government cabinet meeting, with the General Secretary of the American Samoa National Olympic Committee, Billy Young saying local sports federations need to change their mindset concerning ASNOC’s role in the territory. They’re here to develop sports in the territory, not to fund teams to go to the Pacific Games.

World Bank funds underwater high-speed cable for Samoa


Samoans in the neighboring Independent state are looking forward to cheaper and higher-capacity internet access after the World Bank’s Board of Executive Directors approved a grant of US$16 Million for the Samoa Connectivity Project last week. The project is expected to bring economic and social benefits to Samoa with significantly more reliable and affordable Internet connectivity, according to a World Bank media release.

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