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Gov Lolo proposes increased pay for Cabinet members


Governor Lolo Matalasi Moliga is proposing for every director of ASG departments and agencies an increase of $3- 5,000 to their paycheck, and this was revealed during the Budget Hearing for the Department of Human Resources.
This came to light when Senator Laolagi Savali Vaeao pointed out that in the proposed budget for Fiscal Year 2015, there’s a change in director’s salaries. For example, Laolagi said “the Treasurer’s salary was $70,000 and the current salary is now $73,000” according to the budget book.

Day 1 of Budget hearings

Treasury revenue report the “official” ASG document, not Budget Office report

Revenue forecasts, the 2% wage tax payment, and the difference in reporting revenue shortfalls by the ASG Office of Budget and Planning and the Treasury Department, were some of the many issues covered during day-one of the fiscal year 2015 budget hearings, which began yesterday and will last until next week, Thursday, Aug. 28.

ASTCA board terminates CEO just before he resigned


Members of the American Samoa TeleCommunications Authority board did not honor the resignation letter submitted by ASTCA CEO, Moefauo Bill Emmsley on Thursday, the day after the board voted to terminate Moefauo’s month-to-month contract, according to several board members, who did not wish to be named.
They said Moefauo’s contract was terminated during their board meeting on Wednesday, however on Thursday they received copies of Moefauo’s resignation letter, which was given to Governor Lolo Matalasi Moliga.

Fono questions admin about $10K retirement bonus

“When did this program start and who authorized it?”

Bonuses of $10,000 each — paid to employees who recently retired from government service after 40 or more years of work — is part of the Lolo Administration's initiative to retire these workers and make those positions available to returning college and high school graduates, according to the governor’s executive assistant Iulogologo Joseph Pereira.
Iulogologo was responding to Samoa News questions, after the issue about the bonuses was raised last week in separate committee hearings by both the Senate and House.

Prelim report from FEMA estimates $2MIL in damages

Public Assistance money available for government, but none for individuals

An estimate of $2,027,000 was given regarding the damage from the flooding in the territory earlier this month, said Homeland Security Director Utuali’i Iuniasolua Savusa during a cabinet meeting last week. The estimate came from the Infrastructure Branch Chief Recovery Division of FEMA Region 9’s Samuel Ronveaux who’s based in Oakland.

Online bone morrow drive launched for Baby Kai


The Bone Marrow Registry Hawaii Region Office, which includes American Samoa, Hawaii, and two other U.S. Pacific territories, has set up an online bone marrow drive for 12-week old Kaimani Knight - Baby Kai - who has been diagnosed with SCID, or Severe Combined Immunodeficiency, which means that he has no functional immune system.
Baby Kai needs a bone marrow donor — of Samoan and European decent and the Knight family has reached out to all Samoans. Local residents have also asked Samoa News for contact information to test for donor match.

DPS officials identify DHR person involved in police test


Department of Public Safety’s head of the training division, Tauese Va’aomala Sunia testified before the Senate Government Operations Committee that the test for recruitment of candidates for the next police academy was in fact reviewed by a Department of Human Resource official assigned to work with DPS on recruitment process.

Final tally: $1.26MIL due ASG employees for unpaid OT


There were 111 American Samoa Government employees affected by the non-payment of overtime, and they should be getting their payment of back wages no later than August 27, 2014, says U.S. Department of Labor's Wage & Hour Division, District Director for Pacific Island Communities, Terence J. Trotter.
“An Administrative Agreement between the USDOL Wage Hour Division and the American Samoa Government was completed on August 12, 2014 to formally resolve a Fair Labor Standards Act investigation of the American Samoa Government,” Trotter said.

DPS test compromised; similar test in works


Remember the infamous police academy entrance test that only 10 out of an estimated 300 people passed when they took it last month? Depending on who you ask, there might be a light at the end of the tunnel.
Police Commissioner William Haleck revealed yesterday that the same test will most likely not be offered for those who have and will be applying for the ‘police officer cadet trainee’ position that is currently being advertised by the Dept. of Human Resources.

Two groups formally oppose expansion of Monument


American Tunaboat Association (ATA) has joined the list of people opposing President Barack Obama’s proposal to extend the largest marine protected areas in the world and pointed out that such a move will not only affect the US fishing fleet but will have a “negative impact” on American Samoa’s economy.

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