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$100k system upgrade improves visa process at U.S. Embassy — Apia

reporters@samoanews.com

Applying for visas at the U.S. Embassy in Apia is now a more customer-friendly process thanks to a US$100,000 system upgrade, says Chargé d’Affaires Peter Ganser. In a statement issued to the media, Ganser and Embassy staff say they have worked tirelessly to ensure citizens and residents of Samoa have every opportunity to travel or study in the United States. 
 



GAO report: FEMA gave $200 MIL to Territory over past ten years

FEMA obligates $170K for latest summer storms
joy@samoanews.com

Just over $170,000 in federal emergency disaster aid has been obligated to American Samoa as a result of the severe storms, flooding and landslides which affected Tutuila between July 29 and Aug. 3 this year, according to the latest update of U.S. Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) records.
 



ASPA Financial Report for FY2013: Total Assets increased by $8.4 Million

joy@samoanews.com

American Samoa Power Authority total assets increased by $8.4million with the most significant increase reflected in current assets of $1.4million and a utility plant of $6.9million, according to ASPA’s Audit Report for the Fiscal Year ending September 30, 2013. The audit report was issued in May 2014, and conducted by Independent Auditors Deloitte & Toiuche LLP based in Tamuning, Guam.
 



Gov. Lolo joins governors of Hawai’i and Oregon congratulating Mariota

fili@samoanews.com

Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga has congratulated Marcus Mariota for winning the prestigious Heisman Trophy, which was announced last Saturday during a ceremony held in New York City.
 
Mariota, whose family is from Lauli’i, is the first Samoan as well as the first Polynesian to claim the top award in college football. Born in Hawai’i, he is the quarterback for the University of Oregon football team and he received 88.4% of the first place votes.
 



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.
 



Chikungunya kills six in the region

Chikunguna has claimed six lives in the Pacific with nations reporting seven additional illnesses currently affecting their populations.

According to a Public Health Update issued by the Ministry of Health’s (M.O.H.) from its National Disease Surveillance and International Health Regulations Division (N.D.S.I.H.D.) yesterday, chikungunya outbreaks are on-going in Samoa, American Samoa, French Polynesia and Tokelau.

The report cites information offered in the latest Pacific Syndromic Surveillance System*.



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.
 



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