13 May 2009

American Samoa's governor does not want a welfare state

10:33 am on 13 May 2009

American Samoa Governor, Togiola Tulafono, says while he welcomes new money from the Supplemental Security Income program for the blind, aged and disabled he does not want to see the territory become a welfare state.

The territory's US Congressman, Faleomavaega, last week introduced a bill which would extend the SSI program.

The governor says that federal programs such as the SSI would mean new money circulating in the economy, however, he would rather concentrate on attracting new industries and companies that would result in new jobs.

He was also concerned that welfare programs would be a magnet for foreigners to come to the territory and that would create other problems.

He says more people would be dependent on welfare than earning a living through a job.