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PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (February 15, 1998 - Samoa News)---StarKist Samoa has been very cooperative and has bailed the American Samoa Government (ASG) out of tight financial situations through advance tax payments, according to American Samoa Government Treasurer Tifimalae Ale.

Testifying before the Senate Committee on Government Operations last week, Ale told the panel that recently the U.S. South Pacific territory's largest private employer made a substantial advance tax payment to ASG. As a result, the government was able to meet some its obligations.

The Treasurer did not disclose the amount of the advance tax payment, pointing out that such information is highly confidential.

The advance tax payment surfaced when Senator Liua Pisamoa Taifane asked the treasurer if he could request the canneries for a tax advance to help pay off the $4.2 million owed by the LBJ Tropical Medical Center to Straub Clinic & Hospital in Hawaii.

Ale said that ASG could not because of the advance made last month.

The original concept to advance tax payments from StarKist was initiated by Governor Tauese Sunia during negotiations with StarKist last year. Under the agreement, ASG receives advance payment from the canneries from time to time and, at the end of the fiscal year, audits are conducted to determine StarKist's tax position.

Stories from the SAMOA NEWS, American Samoa's daily newspaper, may not be republished without permission. To contact the publisher, send e-mail to

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