21 May 2012

American Samoa military vets want same benefits as other territories and states

7:18 pm on 21 May 2012

U.S. military retirees and veterans residing in American Samoa are calling for the same benefits that their counterparts in other states and territories get.

They have questioned why their dependants cannot be served by the local Veterans Affairs Clinic, why there are restrictions on purchases at the local post exchange or troop store and why the government doesn't give the income tax rebates available in other jurisdictions.

Their concerns were aired at a townhall meeting organised by the gubernatorial team of Lolo Letalu Moliga and Lemanu Peleti Mauga.

Lemanu, says unless the number of registered veterans in American Samoa increased, service and benefits for local veterans will not improve.

It's estimated that 4,000 veterans are in the territory but less than 2,000 are registered.