11 Oct 2005

American Samoan senate wants all government leases to be submitted for approval

8:39 pm on 11 October 2005

The American Samoan senate is to introduce legislation, which if passed, would make it mandatory for all government leases to be approved by the fono.

The move follows criticism of the governor approving a lease for McDonald's at the popular Utulei beach, an issue which is currently before the courts.

Our correspondent, Monica Miller, says that currently any lease which is ten years or over needs approval from the fono,

But, she says it's common for contracts to be drawn up which are one day short of that period to avoid having to submit them.

"Yeah, that's been the practice but now the senate wants that stopped. And, it wants all leases, regardless of how long they are, to be brought to the fono for approval."

Monica Miller says the senate is expected to pass the legislation but it's unlikely to get backing from the house of representatives and the governor himself is expected to veto any such bill.