28 Dec 2005

American Samoa governor to approve US$10m bailout for hospital

2:09 pm on 28 December 2005

American Samoa's governor is expected to sign into law today, the US$10 million loan for LBJ Medical Center's outstanding debts.

Togiola Tulafono regards the hospital's draft fiscal reform plan as strong, but he says some minor issues need to be addressed.

Our correspondent in American Samoa, Fili Sagapolutele, explains the significance of the debt bailout:

"The money is going to help the hospital get out of some outstanding debts; longstanding bills due to vendors off-island, medications, and there's also some longstanding contributions to the government payroll system regarding contribution to retirement."

Fili Sagapolutele says some of the reforms will be finalised by the time the first payment is received from government employees' retirement fund and it'll take about 30 days to get everything straightened out.