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Community Briefs



With the arrival of a new administration in American Samoa, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) continued to work with the American Samoa Government and its new leadership “to demonstrate improved grants implementation and monitoring,” according to a FEMA report last month to the federal Interagency Group on Insular Areas (IGIA).


“Support continued to be provided to their efforts to improve communications infrastructure and to encourage the development of mass care/emergency assistance plans,” it says and cited for example, that FEMA Region Office in Oakland supported the Grants Management Technical Assistance Program training provided to all ASG staff (last year), with emphasis on U.S. Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Justice Department grants.


In addition to providing grant administration training, the workshop provided an opportunity for ASG staff to cross-train and to develop productive relationships to better implement the programs, it says.


Further, FEMA Region office is working with staff from the local Homeland Security Department it’s Territorial Emergency Management Coordination Office to install back-up emergency generators  — currently on-site in the Manu’a Islands, others are pending maintenance and operation agreements with the hosting agencies — to implement the next phase of the Land Mobile Radio system and to acquire equipment for the Strategic Technology Reserve.




Hawaiian Airlines start off the new year with the highest marks, leading the nation in on-time performance and fewest flight cancellations in January, based on the January 2014 Air Travel Consumer Report by the U.S. Department of Transportation.


Hawaiian’s flights arrived on schedule 92.8% of the time throughout January, according to the report, which also says the Honolulu-based carrier, was the top airline with the least flight cancellations at 0.0 percent, representing one cancellation out of 6,019 total flights for January.


In addition, the airline had the second lowest rate of mishandled bags, with 2.41 reports for every 1,000 passengers served. (Complete details of the report covering 16 major U.S. airlines are online:


Meanwhile, Hawaiian announced early this week that it carried 750,889 passengers in February this year, which is almost the same data for the same month last year.


During the first two-months of the year, Hawaiian carried just over 1.57 million passengers, according to the airline’s data. Hawaiian Airlines is the major corporate sponsor of the Samoa News Spelling Bee competition.




In its ongoing efforts to promote American Samoa as a tourist destination off-island, the American Samoa Visitors Bureau will participate in the San Diego Travel & Adventure Show set for Mar. 29 and 30, says ASVB executive director David Vaeafe.


The consumer show at the San Diego Convention Center will feature over 150 destinations from around the US and the world, says Vaeafe in the ASVB’s March eNewsletter, which also says that over 10,000 consumers are expected to visit the show over the two days looking for summer holiday escapes.


The San Diego travel show follows a travel trade event on Mar. 10-13 that ASVB also attended — the Cruise Shipping Miami Convention in Florida as a member of the South Pacific Cruise Alliance show casing the Pacific and meeting cruise line executives. SPCA members are American Samoa, Samoa, French Polynesia, Cook Islands, Fiji, Tonga, New Caledonia and Pitcairn Island.