4 Apr 2012

American Samoa Senate rejects governor's LBJ plans

3:15 pm on 4 April 2012

The American Samoa Senate has rejected two proposals from the governor Togiola Tulafono for dealing with the debts faced by the LBJ Medical Center.

One bill, which endeavours to raise ten million dollars for the hospital's off island medical referral programme, was rejected by the senators because of the huge hikes planned in import taxes on cigarettes and beer.

That measure would have also put up business licence fees and raised income tax.

The senators say the community already faces a heavy burden and should not be subjected to more financial obligations.

The Senate also rejected a bill that would dissolve the LBJ Medical Center Authority and transfer the hospital to the Executive Branch under the Department of Health.

The senators say the current set up is better.