Community Briefs

compiled by Samoa News staff

TAFUNA AIRPORT TO HOLD FULL SCALE EXERCISE TOMORROW

The Department of Port Administration will be holding a Full Scale Exercise tomorrow, Apr. 27, from 8a.m. to 12 noon at Pago Pago International Airport, according to a statement from Port Administration.

All local and federal emergency response agencies will be in or around the Tafuna airport conducting emergency drills.  Port Administration advises the public not to be alarmed by all of the ongoing activities on this day, “it is only a drill”.

The public is also advise that normal operations at the airport will continue as usual, but traffic "MAY" be redirected by Public Safety Department during the hours of 8:00am to 12:00pm.  Further questions please contact Port Administration’s airport office at 699-9101.

MAIAVA & IEROME SHARING COORDINATOR OF HIGH RISK TASK FORCE

Gov. Lolo Matalasi Moliga has designated Arona Maiava as the new administrator of the Office of Grants Oversight and Accountability, which was first created in 2013 via executive order, and as part of the Governor’s Office.

In a memo issued Apr. 20, Lolo noted that since the inception of the Office of Grants Oversight and Accountability, Jerome Ierome was administrator of the office, however, with other changes in Governor’s Office staffing, Ierome is now also responsible for Capital Improvement Projects and Special Programs.

CIP are federally funded and Special Programs are locally funded, both are administered by the Governor’s Office under the annual budget.

Lolo says that effective immediately, Maiava is designated as the administrator of the Office of Grants and the position of Coordinator of the High Risk Task Force is to be shared by both men — Maiava and Ierome.

Maiava is a retired federal auditor with the US Department of Homeland Security’s Office of Inspector General (USDHS-OIG); and the governor introduced him during a cabinet meeting in January this year.

A January 2017 audit report by USDHS-OIG for a California project shows Maiava as a senior auditor, while an audit report of the USDHS-OIG of an Arizona project in 2014 shows him as the auditor-in-charge.

In a January cabinet meeting, Lolo said Maiava had been helping other departments, such as the Territorial Administration on Aging, which was having issues with its federal grantor. At the time, Lolo said he hoped Maiava would return home to help the Territory on such issues.

At a cabinet meeting in March this year, Lolo reminded his cabinet that about 65% to 70% of the total budget comes from federal grants and ASG doesn’t have a good record at the federal level when it comes to complying with guidelines to ensure that funding is monitored closely.

And that is why, he said, they have made changes to the Office of Grants Oversight and Accountability — that it be headed by Jerome Ierome and overseen by the Governor’s Office.

Lolo said the problem faced by TAOA and other executive branch entities is that they aren’t filing required reports in a timely manner as directed by the federal grantor.

Comment Here