AMERICAN SAMOA RETIREMENT FUND LOAN TO BE

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$US 10 MILLION

PAGO PAGO, American Samoa (May 8, 1998 - Samoa News)---The American Samoa Government (ASG) will be getting a $10 million loan from the ASG Employees Retirement Fund, not the $13.3 million Governor Tauese Sunia insisted on.

Moreover, the Retirement Fund Board has indicated that it does not accept the tax increases in sodas, beer, cigarettes and alcohol as sufficient revenue measures to raise funds to repay the 10-year, 8.5 percent interest loan. Instead, the Board reportedly wants port fees to be designated as the source of revenues to repay the loan.

If this is the case, the Administration may need lawmakers to specifically approve allocation of fees collected by the Port Administration as the source of funding for the loan repayments.

Samoa News has learned that the matter is now up to the attorneys, who will draft an agreement which needs to be approved by both parties.

Reportedly, the Tauese Administration would like the loan negotiations finalized before Monday as the loan proceeds will be partly used to finance ASG's payroll next week.

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

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