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Ho Chee confirmed first Commish of Financial Inst.


The Fono has officially confirmed Robert Ho Chee for a four-year-term as the first Commissioner of the Office of Financial Institution. The OFI’s initial operation expenses will be funded with proceeds from bonds issued by the American Samoa Economic Development Authority (ASEDA).

Territory key part of int’l pact to combat “IUU” fishing

American Samoa is at center of the effort, says NOAA Office of Law Enforcement

With the United States a signatory to an international agreement to combat IUU — illegal, unreported, and unregulated — fishing, American Samoa, home to two canneries and many fishing vessels, is now part of the agreement, which went into force on June 5 this year.

New LBJ budget nearly $6.1M more than FY2016

With nearly 760 employees and about 55% of the funds coming from the feds

LBJ Medical Center, which Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga says is currently faced with financial challenges, is proposing a more than $50 million budget for fiscal year 2017, with nearly 760 employees, according to the hospital’s budget proposal, which shows about $32.2 million in funding coming from the federal government.

FY 2017: About $5Million set for Gov's Special Programs


Several projects are to be funded with money — about $5Million — that Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga has allocated under the Special Programs category, which is overseen by the Governor’s Office, for the proposed fiscal year 2017 budget.
Among the funding allocation is $400,000 to help finance various improvement projects for economic development of the Manu’a Island. This allocation, the governor says, includes funds needed to complete and maintain government buildings on Ofu and Ta’u islands.

Huge drop in gasoline prices — effective Aug. 15


Local motorists will soon see a huge drop in gasoline prices at local gas stations following the release of the new maximum allowable price (MAP) for all petroleum products sold in American Samoa.
The new MAP, released yesterday by the ASG Office of Petroleum Management (OPM) is effective Aug. 15 to Sept. 14. OPM data shows that the new gasoline MAP is $2.21 per gallon a decrease of 17 cents from the previous MAP.

Lolo & Lemanu officially kick off re-election campaign


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  • American Samoa's driver’s licenses not in compliance with Federal Real ID Act

    Despite territory receiving about $1.9M for compliance

    A cabinet director was prohibited from entering a federal building in Honolulu because her American Samoa driver’s license was not in compliance with the federal Real ID Act, according to a letter from US Interior Assistant Secretary for Insular Affairs, Esther Kia’aina, to Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga.
    In her July 22 letter, Kia’aina said that she was with Marine and Wildlife Resources Department director Dr. Ruth Matagi-Tofiga, when the director was denied entrance in June to the Prince Kuhio Kalanianaole Federal Building.

    Feds continue criminal probe into seafood products


    While the nation’s major canned tuna producers — including StarKist Co., owner of StarKist Samoa cannery — have asked a federal judge to dismiss a major civil action lawsuit against them, a federal grand jury is continuing its criminal investigation involving packaged seafood products, according to federal court records.

    DOC data shows females dominate local population

    “Official estimate” of pop. — 60,200 as of July 1, 2016

    American Samoa’s population estimate as of July 1, 2016 is 60,200, according to a statement Tuesday by the local Commerce Department, which also says that there is a possibility that the territory’s 2010 population census was an “undercount”.
    And DOC data shows that females dominate the local population as compared to the male population.

    Guns and marijuana found by Customs at Pago airport


    The guns that were discovered in luggage belonging to two local residents who were on the same flight that arrived in the territory last month have been turned over to police custody and Samoa News understands that the suspects will be prosecuted.
    Last month, Customs agents at the Tafuna International Airport discovered a 22mm and a pair of 9mm handguns.
    The weapons belong to two separate passengers, who stashed the guns inside their suitcases. Samoa News cannot confirm if the two suspects know each other.

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