1 Feb 2011

American Samoa senator calls for more information on government poor finances

7:10 pm on 1 February 2011

A former treasurer in American Samoa is calling for more information on the government's reported 7 point 2 million US dollar budget shortfall.

Currently a variety of revenue gathering measures are being discussed, including a proposed tax on sales, businesses and remitted money.

Senator Velega Savali says it seems like the people of American Samoa are being forced to pay out for the government's deficit.

He says people need to know how the government got into the red in the first place, before a suitable financial plan can be put in place.

"What happened to the financial situation of our government? And until we find that out, I'm against any raise in taxation."

Senator Velega Savali says he suggests one way of saving money immediately could be to dramatically cut back government staff numbers.