3 Dec 2010

Lack of funds prompts American Samoa cuts

1:40 pm on 3 December 2010

The American Samoa Government is reducing hours for employees effective next month.

This was announced by Governor Togiola Tulafono at a cabinet meeting this morning.

Our correspondent in Pago Pago, Monica Miller, reports.

"Togiola has also announced that all government hiring will be frozen effective today. Two cabinet members explained that the work hour reduction will have government employees working 40 hours a week, but will only be paid for 35 hours. Specifically, employees will still work 8 hours a day but they'll only be paid for 7 hours while the other hour will be reserved for annual leave. The government is looking at either having employees cash in on the annual leave as one option once the government's financial crisis is over. The governor says the work reduction will be the policy if the financial situation does not improve between now and the new year. Togiola says that the financial situation is so bad that in order to make payroll the government is not paying its vendors."