Community News Briefs

compiled by Samoa News staff

BLUESKY COMMITS TO THE AMERICAN SAMOA DISASTER RELIEF FUND —

Tafuna, AS - In response to the recent major natural disasters in the United States, Bluesky has committed $500 to assist organizations who provide recovery and relief for the millions of Americans affected. A portion of the funds were raised by community members through a Text to Donate campaign, which Bluesky opened to the public, and Bluesky thanks the public for these contributions.

“As a small pacific island, we are vulnerable to natural disasters, and we remember how it feels to be affected by hurricanes, especially now as it is hurricane season in American Samoa," says Bluesky CEO Toleafoa Douglas Creevey. "So we are giving to those in their time of need as we have before been blessed and offered help before in our times of need."

The American Samoa Government hosted a live telethon on Saturday, October 28, to fundraise for the American Red Cross and support those seeking disaster relief assistance.

For inquiries, please contact 699-2759 or <as.marketing@blueskypacificgroup.com>

AMATA DELIVERS CONGRESSIONAL WESTERN CAUCAS WEEKLY ADDRESS

Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Aumua Amata delivered the Congressional Western Caucus Weekly Address last week, in which she highlighted recent legislation passed by the Natural Resources Committee that would ensure future marine monuments could only be created with local/territorial input and through congressional action.

In her speech, she shared remarks about American Samoa’s traditional fishing and Fa’a Samoa with the Western Caucus viewership.

Prepared text of Congresswoman Amata for the Congressional Western Caucus Weekly Address is below:

Talofa! I’m pleased to join you today with an update for the Western Caucus. I’m proud to represent American Samoa, a beautiful group of seven islands in the Pacific Ocean. We may not be the first place you think of in the Western Caucus! I joined this Caucus, not just because we are thousands of miles to the West of most of the country, but because of shared interests and priorities.

For instance, we have two rainy seasons, so we aren’t as likely to see a furious wildfire like those causing so much damage this year in the western U.S.  Instead, our highly trained teams of expert firefighters went and joined those efforts. When the fire bell rings, that’s what firefighters do – they respond, and wherever they are from, we’re proud of them all.

Like other parts of the West, we in American Samoa have beautiful places and coastlines, including national park and monument areas that cover both sea and land.

I’m very proud of the work the Western Caucus has put into these issues, and the leadership of so many of my colleagues. In each of our districts, our monument area might look a little different from another place, but there are important underlying issues that are the same. For instance, is there good local input from the people who know the area best? We’re working together in Congress to ensure state, local and territorial input for monument decisions. That’s just common sense.

Protecting beautiful places doesn’t have to cause harm to nearby small businesses. That’s why a bureaucracy in Washington, D.C., shouldn’t be the only one with a voice.

In American Samoa, decisions in Washington about a marine monument placed our traditional fishing waters off limits, despite generations of use. Fishing is part of our heritage and Fa’a Samoa, our way of life. We’re working together so that Congress must be consulted on future marine monument decisions, so the people living there are truly represented – just as the country’s founders intended.

That’s just a small part of what the Western Caucus is all about, and that’s why we work together in Congress to keep these beautiful places – mountains, deserts, and islands – not only beautiful, but also free, prosperous and respectful of our heritage. Thank you.

(Source: Congresswoman Amata's Office, Washington DC)

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