Sixteen ASG 4th quarter performance reports are MIA
When the Executive Branch recently released the 4th quarter performance report for fiscal year 2012, the performance report of the Treasury Department was not included; and it has outraged a handful of lawmakers and worried some in the new administration of governor-elect Lolo Matalasi Moliga.
In his cover letter to the governor along with the 4th quarter report, ASG Budget Office director Malemo Tausaga says a total of 16 government entities, agencies, departments and offices didn’t submit their reports although all of them “were notified and made aware” of the deadline to submit the reports. The letter didn’t outline the deadline date, and no other explanation was given.
Other entities not included in the 4th quarter performance report — which is required by law — are Department of Legal Affairs, Local Government or Samoan Affairs Office, Public Works, Parks and Recreation, Procurement Office, Administrative Law Judge, Administrative Services, Marine and Wildlife Resources, Human and Social Services, Criminal Planning Justice Agency, Historic Preservation and Board of Higher Education, or the American Samoa Community College. the Territorial Office of Fiscal Reform, the American Samoa Power Authority and the LBJ Medical Center.
ASG is currently within the first quarter of fiscal year 2013, which ends on Dec. 31, 2012, with the first quarter performance report due in February next year.
At least three lawmakers were outraged that the Treasury Department report was not included in the 4th quarter performance report, saying that this report also provides unaudited financial information pertaining to the government at the end of the fiscal year.
The fourth quarter report is an important one, because it provides insight into the financial picture of the American Samoa Government at the end of the fiscal year.
More importantly, this year, the report will provide the incoming administration with some idea of where the government stands financially, issues that impact government services, the number of ASG employees and what services ASG provided in the final quarter as well as during the rest of the fiscal year.
Samoa News understands that some Fono members will make official requests soon to these government entities to provide a copy of their performance reports, as soon as possible or before the end of this year.
INCOMING ADMINISTRATION CONCERNS
Members of the Lolo/Lemanu transition team were anxiously awaiting the release of the 4th quarter report which would help them during their transition work with all government departments, agencies and authorities.
Samoa News understands that some of the transition members were upset and worried that the 4th quarter report didn’t include one from the Treasury Department, which provides a forecast of whether the government would be in the red, or have a surplus at the end of FY 2012.
One transition member told Samoa News that “some of us wanted to see this report, especially the one from Treasury to get an idea beforehand on ASG’s money situation.”
The incoming administration as well as the new Legislature will have to wait until early next year to see where the government stands at the end of FY 2012.
In the meantime, the incoming administration may be able to find out the status of ASG finances, from its transition team visiting the Treasury Department.