25 Jan 2016

American Samoa MP salary bill 'illegal'

3:28 pm on 25 January 2016

An American Samoan MP says a proposed bill to hike the salaries of MPs doesn't have a funding source and is illegal.

The Tuala-uta Representative, Larry Sanitoa, says any bill that includes unbudgeted proposals needs to include revenue measures.

The bill was introduced last Friday by Faimealelei Anthony Allen, and proposes raising the salaries of the Fono leader from $30,000 to $50,000 US dollars, and that of senators and representatives from $25,000 to $45,000.

The salary of the Swains Delegate would jump from $20,000 to $40,000.

In response to Mr Sanitoa's concerns, Faimealelei, who is the acting chairman of the Budget and Appropriation Committee, said he consulted with the Fono's Legal Counsel Nathaniel Savali.

The bill is currently before the House Budget and Appropriations Committee.