15 Feb 2008

American Samoa Senators say the Secretary of Labour should decide on wage rises

3:16 pm on 15 February 2008

The American Samoa Senate wants annual wage hikes removed and decisions left to the Secretary of Labour who would need to consider any adverse impacts on the territory's economy.

A resolution to this effect is to be presented to the House Subcommittee on Insular Affairs when it holds hearings on the minimum wage law next week.

The resolution reiterates the government's and the tuna canneries' position that the federally order sudden minimum wage increases would cripple the local economy.

The government has warned of massive layoffs and the canneries have said they would be forced to reduce operations or even shut down if the subsequent hikes go ahead.

The American Samoa Congressman, Faleomaveaga Eni Hunkin, has already called for the removal of the escalator hikes in the minimum wage.